Miami GP boss admits shock financial loss while F1 drivers slam the new special circuit

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 • Miami's razzmatazz event has cost the Miami GP boss a greater loss financially than expected. 
 • While the race makes no profit in its first year, Tom Garfinkel says they don't regret it.
 • Several drivers have called for changes to be made for the next race in Miami. 
 • For motoring news, go to Wheels24


Top race executive Tom Garfinkel admits the otherwise popular and celebrity-fuelled inaugural Miami GP actually lost money.

He says the losses were greater than were actually anticipated, even though he doesn't regret spending big to put the new street event on the map.

"If you'd asked me six months ago, I would have expected the event to make money given how revenue has been going," Garfinkel, also the boss of the Miami Dolphins and the Hard Rock Stadium, is quoted by Sky Deutschland.

"But if you look at expenses, we're not going to make any money this year."

He admits it's a blow but insists that it will not jeopardise Miami's new place on the Formula 1 calendar, which is guaranteed for a decade.

IMOLA, ITALY - APRIL 18: Tom Garfinkel, CEO of the
Tom Garfinkel, CEO of the Miami Dolphins talks in a press conference to announce the 2022 F1 Miami Grand Prix ahead of the F1 Grand Prix of Emilia Romagna at Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari on April 18, 2021 in Imola, Italy.

"It was very important to us to offer a great event," said Garfinkel, justifying wild expenses like the much-derided 'fake harbour'.

"The costs far exceeded our expectations," he admits, "but we did everything we could to develop the Formula 1 brand and the type of event that we wanted to represent."

The event was actually a three-day sell-out, so for the future, Garfinkel is looking to expand the maximum circuit capacity of 87 500 to at least 100 000 if possible.

He is also tackling the post-race hangover of multiple drivers blasting the quality of the circuit layout and especially the tarmac surface, which Lando Norris calls "crap".

"There are many things we can learn from and do better," Garfinkel acknowledged.

"But there are also some things that went really well. The feedback has been very positive from the teams, the drivers, Formula 1, and the FIA."

However, while Garfinkel claims feedback was positive, the drivers have shared their real feelings about the track.

According to a report by TeamTalk Media, despite scant overtaking opportunities, two-time world champion Fernando Alonso revealed several drivers complained that the track was not up to F1 standard, leading to sections being resurfaced.

"In the four laps I did on Friday, I almost knocked myself out because I hit the first curb and your head just bounced from left to right, like at least five, six times, but really bad," said defending drivers' champion Max Verstappen.

"It's so slow, and I think our cars look way better if it's a bit more of a flowing combination."

Meanwhile, Daniel Ricciardo compared the track surface to the Australian outback.

"Let's say, for what we have been used to - let's just put it like that - it's certainly a little more outback spec," the McLaren driver told RacingNews365.com.

"It reminds me of some of the surfaces that I've got on my farm in Australia, that loose Australian gravel. In an off-road car, it's fun, but these Pirelli [tyres] aren't quite as switched on to this loose tarmac.

"It would be nice if it were a little different, and we could use more of the track. When you're following someone, you want to run a little wide and cut back, criss-cross. When you try to criss-cross, you're off track.

"I saw people trying to make a move and crashing, like with [Sebastian] Vettel, [as] there was no grip on the inside. It made it hard to keep a clean race."

Maybe 2023 will see real water in the "marina"?

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