Miami Grand Prix organisers consider switch to night race

MIAMI, Florida -- The organisers of the Miami Grand Prix have held discussions about turning their annual Formula One event into a night race in the future.

The 3.3-mile circuit is located around the grounds of Miami Dolphins' Hard Rock Stadium, and on Sunday hosted the second race of its 10-year contract.

The event, which is set to retain its early-May date moving forward, is one of three F1 races in the United States this season, with a night race in Las Vegas set to join the schedule in November.

Six of F1's 23 races now take place under floodlights, and Miami Dolphin's CEO Tom Garfinkel is considering giving the same treatment to his event.

"We've had some discussions about that," Garfinkel told reporters in Miami. "We've had some discussions about potentially doing that.

"It's obviously this time of year the weather's a little unpredictable, the weather's been nice this year so far, last year was unseasonably hot, but there's a lot of factors that go into that with F1 and television and everything else so we've got to weigh all those things, but we're certainly open-minded to it."

Garfinkel said other considerations would include the noise for local residents in Miami Gardens and whether Miami would run its race on Saturday night like Las Vegas plans to do.

"We're not at a place where we're making a decision right now," he added. "I think we're having discussions where if we did it what would it look like."

The Miami Grand Prix invested heavily in improving facilities for its second race, including three levels of new hospitality units above the pit lane and the decision to move team hospitality units on to the field of Hard Rock Stadium.

Garfinkel said the upgrades were made with the race in mind, but there are plans to use the pit buildings on football weekends, including a unique premium tailgating experience for Dolphins fans.

"We'll do some things around football games, but we'll do some fun things," he added. "I'd like to leave the driver signs up above the garages and for football games we'll do some premium tailgating down there.

"So someone can rent out Lewis Hamilton's garage and have a bartender, they can pull their car right in, have a chef, do some premium tailgating as well."