Track Construction Begins for St. Pete’s Firestone Grand Prix


Downtown St. Pete gears up for the Firestone Grand Prix from March 8 to 10. Over 18 days, streets will transform into a race circuit, passing landmarks like Pioneer Park, the Mahaffey Theater, and the Dali Museum before reaching the Albert Whitted Airport runway.

Around 300 workers will assemble the 1.8-mile track using 18,000 feet of steel-reinforced concrete blocks, weighing 20 million pounds. This intricate setup promises thrilling action against St. Pete’s waterfront.

Event organizer Kim Green expects the track to be set up in under three weeks and dismantled in just seven days. Green stresses the track’s appeal, showcasing its ability to host thrilling races against St. Pete’s scenic backdrop.

Drivers, including veteran Angus Rogers and reigning champion Marcus Ericsson, laud the Grand Prix’s unique challenges. Rogers stresses precision and technical skill on the track’s tight corners and narrow streets.

Ericsson echoes the sentiment, acknowledging the race’s distinctiveness and the need for simulated practice to acclimate to its nuances. The absence of real-time training underscores the Grand Prix’s reputation as a formidable test of skill and strategy.

Special 20th-anniversary events, including a track-side 5K and a free concert, ensure an unforgettable celebration in Tampa Bay.