Is Formula One considering a Chicago Grand Prix?

Is Formula One considering a Chicago Grand Prix?

Formula One could add another American stop (and its first Midwestern stop) to its calendar in the not-too-distant future. While nothing is official, a new report claims the race’s organizers recently filed a trademark for several variations of the name “Chicago Grand Prix.”

Citing U.S. patent office records, the Chicago Sun-Times wrote that the organizers trademarked variations of the names “Formula 1 Chicago Grand Prix” and “Grand Prix Chicago” on January 19. We always take trademark filings and patent applications with a grain of salt because they’re not always accurate. Chevrolet trademarked the Cavalier nameplate in September 2022, yet the model hasn’t returned to our shores yet. However, sometimes they’re right on: Lamborghini trademarked the Revuelto name in May 2022 and unveiled the car the following year.

Alderman Brian Hopkins told the publication that a race is unlikely to happen. “I’m told that F1 typically requires a 10-year minimum deal. And that appears to be non-negotiable. The conversation [with the city] did not get much past that,” he explained to the Chicago Sun-Times.

Formula One officials and the Chicago mayor’s office haven’t commented on the report.

Chicago is better known for deep-dish pizza than racing, but NASCAR proved it’s possible to turn the Windy City into a track in July 2023. The first street race organized by the series took place in and around Grant Park in downtown Chicago. Hopkins notes hosting a Formula One race would be considerably more complicated, the track would notably have to be longer, and considerably far more expensive.

“What we did with NASCAR, welding manhole covers and smoothing over potholes and calling it a track — that doesn’t work with F1.”

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Formula One has already published its 2024 calendar and Chicago isn’t on it, so a Grand Prix in the Prairie State wouldn’t happen until 2025 at the very earliest. Three races are scheduled to take place in the United States this year: the Miami Grand Prix, the USA Grand Prix in Austin, and the Las Vegas Grand Prix. The latter was held for the first time after a decades-long hiatus in 2023, and it drew a massive crowd.