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Las Vegas Grand Prix 2023

Perez in bold Las Vegas call as Leclerc, Verstappen in agreement over changes

The Las Vegas Grand Prix feeds straight into the finale in Abu Dhabi, with a significant time-zone shift involved paddock personnel. Sergio Perez has a way to solve that problem.

Verstappen Perez Leclerc  Las Vegas
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To news overview © XPBimages

Sergio Perez has called for the Las Vegas Grand Prix to be the Formula 1 season-finale to avoid significant timezone shifts like the one currently being experienced to Abu Dhabi.

The final two rounds of the season are running back-to-back in Las Vegas and Abu Dhabi, with a 12 hour difference between the two, leading to heavy jet lag for those on the ground, including drivers, for both events.

In 2024, Vegas moves to the first leg of a triple-header to round out the season with Qatar and Abu Dhabi, but the same problem will still persist.

In addition, the Vegas race was effectively a Japanese GP schedule held in the western United States, with the late local time sessions planned to maximise the TV audience in Europe, with the 22:00 Saturday start being 06:00 Sunday in the UK.

To get around this, Red Bull driver Perez has suggested moving the Nevada spectacle to the finale, as Charles Leclerc and Max Verstappen both agreed changes need to be made.

Perez's Las Vegas call

"We have to go now to Abu Dhabi, probably the longest distance that we have to travel in the whole year," explained Perez to media including RacingNews365.

"We need to look at it and probably make Vegas the final race. That will be also very nice for me; I'm only two hours away from Guadalajara so that would be a nice end!"

Both Leclerc and Verstappen echoed Perez's thoughts about the distances and times involved in the race.

"I think mostly that's the fact that we have been driving so late," Leclerc began when asked what changes he'd like to see for the 2024 Las Vegas GP.

"I can see the point, obviously with the audience in Europe. I don't know if that's even the point or why we have been racing so late, but I felt like it was a bit on the limit.

"Also with the temperatures, it was very, very tricky so this is definitely one thing I would like to change for next year. On the other hand, as I've said, since the beginning of the weekend I’ve really enjoyed it."

Verstappen backed Leclerc's thoughts and added in that the back-to-back nature of the race with Abu Dhabi and the logistics involved were "too much."

"For next year, maybe it is not possible, but to make it a bit better travelling to Abu Dhabi," the World Champion explained.

"At the moment, it is such a big time-shift, especially at the end of the season when everyone is already a bit tired, I think it is a little bit much.

"Maybe it would be ideal to find a different date because I find that maybe we need to do an American tour, maybe for ticket sales, that's not ideal.

"Maybe we can find a bit of a solution. 12 hour time-zone shifts and completely different timings for racing is a bit much."

F1 2023 Las Vegas Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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