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#249, Formula 1 US nirvana, muscle cars, surveys

With the recent announcement of the 2023 Formula 1 schedule, automobile racing’s most lucrative series will have three events in the United States for the first time.

The international circuit doesn’t include any drivers from the United States, but enthusiasts in this country can next year travel to Austin, Texas; Las Vegas, Nevada; and Miami, Florida to witness the sport’s finest.

Formula 1 is expensive for its participants and spectators. A recent article on Robbreport.com detailed one package to attend the new Las Vegas stop on the international circuit for $1 million.

The Formula 1 international racing circuit will have three races in the United States for the first time in 2023 — Austin, Texas; Las Vegas, Nevada; and Miami, Florida.
The Formula 1 international racing circuit will have three races in the United States for the first time in 2023 — Austin, Texas; Las Vegas, Nevada; and Miami, Florida.

Co-host Bruce Aldrich and I discuss the Formula 1 phenomenon as one of three topics on episode #249 of The Weekly Driver Podcast.

“I would just call it the pinnacle of racing, unbridled,” Bruce explains. “Obviously there are rules; there’s always rules, some kind of rules to keep the price from being astronomical, which it kind of already is in Formula 1. But’s only half astronomical because there are rules that limit things.

“But it’s the fastest cars. It attracts rich people from all over the world. They follow it through the different races and money’s no object.

Also in this episode:

A letter writer commenting on a recent column I wrote about the 2022 Ford Mustang, explained the iconic vehicle is a pony car, not a muscle car. Bruce and I discuss the “gray area” of what defines a pony car and what defines a muscle car.

Formula 1 racing and muscle cars don't have much in common, with one exception — performance.
Formula 1 cars and muscle cars don’t have much in common, with one exception — performance.

“It’s a hard topic because you can’t win,” says Bruce. “A pony car is often a muscle car, but it doesn’t have to be. It depends on the motor.”

Lastly, Bruce and I discuss a recent analysis of the least and most expensive cars to operate. The study was presented by Zutobi, the online international driver’s education company with courses in the United States, United Kingdom, Sweden, Australia, France, and Germany.

Lots of automotive sites publish surveys. Bruce and I discuss the legitimacy of surveys, particularly the size of the sampling used to compile statistics.

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