COTA boss outlines main ‘advantage’ over other US circuits

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Circuit of the Americas Chairman Bobby Epstein believes the track
has an “advantage” over the other two US venues on the
calendar. The track sits alongside both the Miami and Las Vegas
races, with the latter making its debut in November, leading to
concerns that it could impact ticket sales for the United States
Grand Prix. Tickets have seen a price increase year-on-year at the
Austin event, with main grandstand tickets setting back spectators
$875. But speaking to media including RacingNews365.com , Epstein
explained: “We have an advantage in that we can offer a lower price
ticket, because we can fit more people in and you can spread the
costs out differently. “By virtue of being a permanent circuit, our
costs to operate are less. It's not so much of ‘Can the fan afford
the other tickets?' as it is ‘Can the promoters afford to lower
their price and still be okay?' – that's the tough part.” Epstein:
We want more people to come in Epstein expects to draw more crowds
in the next couple of years as the circuit offers more ticket
options, whilst an improvement to the facilities can enable better
traffic flow in and out of the circuit. “What we're doing is
selling a limited number of tickets at $300 to give the fans a
chance for those who said ‘I'd come if the price were lower' –
Okay, here's your chance to show me that you would come if the
price is lower,” he explained. “If you didn't, and you didn't jump
on it early when the price goes back to what it should be, you
can't say ‘if the price was lower'. So let's give them a chance.
“We do want more people to come in, we want to hit bigger numbers.
The campus can hold the people, it's getting them in and out and
we'll go for much bigger numbers then keep our prices really low.”
With both Las Vegas and Miami looking to cater more to the glamour
that races like Monaco offer, Epstein believes COTA has its place
on the calendar for regular fans. “People will taste each race and
decide which one suits them best, which flavour they liked the
most. Hopefully, they'll appreciate what we give them more,” said
Epstein. “I think there's a lot more overlap between the Las Vegas
and the Miami crowds. “While we have plenty of celebrities and
glamour, we don't come close to Miami or Vegas on the on the
glamour scale. “It helps in that it keeps the attention on in
the country more times per year, it's like a commercial for us. So
it's a net positive.”

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