The quest to bring a Formula One Grand Prix to Miami cleared a key hurdle after the series struck a deal with Hard Rock Stadium to host the first annual race in Miami Gardens in 2021, according to a Tuesday report from the Miami Herald.
Hard Rock Stadium—home to the Miami Dolphins NFL franchise—took up the mantle of hosting F1 after series organizers were unable to come to an agreement with the city of Miami to hold a race on a downtown street circuit. The stadium, located north of the city in the town of Miami Gardens, just emerged from a $700 million renovation project aimed at turning the site into a multipurpose entertainment center.
"We are thrilled to announce that Formula One and Hard Rock Stadium have reached an agreement in principle to host the first-ever Formula One Miami Grand Prix at Hard Rock Stadium," said Dolphins CEO Tom Garfinkel and F1 Managing Director Sean Bratches, in a joint statement.
With a deal in place, the two parties now turn to Miami-Dade County for final approval. That may be easier said than done, as some locals have predictably spoken out against the idea of hosting a motorsports event on the scale of a F1 Grand Prix, citing potential noise, traffic and pollution. County Commissioner Barbara Jordan, who originally favored the Miami F1 effort, has sided with the opposition in Miami Gardens.
Local hospitality businesses said they welcome the opportunity to host such a high-profile event, with some advocates projecting it could bring in revenue similar to that of an NFL Super Bowl.
Adding a second U.S. F1 Grand Prix to the annual calendar has proved challenging. Early efforts focused on New York City and surrounding areas, but ultimately fizzled due to both logistical challenges and an inability to secure funding.