As F1 readies Vegas return

Hard Rock partners with Red Bull Racing on fan experiences, branding ahead of Miami Grand Prix debut

Reading time 2:41 min

Hospitality and entertainment giant Hard Rock International has signed a partnership with Formula One racing team Oracle Red Bull Racing in anticipation of F1 arriving in Florida for the inaugural Miami Grand Prix, due to take place on May 8. The new deal also involves esports.

The multi-year agreement, announced on Thursday, will see Hard Rock join Red Bull Racing in a range of key roles: Official Team and Viewing Partner, which includes integrated resorts, casinos, hotels, restaurants and retail.

“From South Florida's flagship Guitar Hotel at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood and across its locations in nearly 70 countries and more than 250 communities, Hard Rock's portfolio of hotels, live music venues, signature cafes and casinos provide an unrivaled global opportunity to bring fans of F1 together,” a press release states.

As the team’s official viewing partner, the new agreement will see Hard Rock and Oracle Red Bull Racing work together “to create inspiring, immersive and exhilarating experiences” for fans, focused on Grand Prix weekends across the 23-race calendar. This is set to make Hard Rock venues “the go-to race day destination for F1 fans around the world.”

"This agreement with Hard Rock is a landmark for the team,” said Oracle Red Bull Racing Team Principal and CEO, Christian Horner. “It gives us the opportunity to provide our fans with some incredible experiences, and in turn it plugs the Hard Rock brand directly into a fan base that is expanding at an exceptional rate.”

The alliance will also encompass a collaboration with the Red Bull Racing’s Esports Team. Founded in 2018, the esports squad has since won seven world championship titles across multiple esports racing disciplines. The deal will see the team bring its experience of virtual racing to fan experiences through bespoke sim racing rigs in select Hard Rock territories.

Under the new deal, Hard Rock’s branding will be featured on Oracle Red Bull Racing’s RB18 car, and on the race suits of its drivers, defending F1 World Champion Max Verstappen and two-time grand prix winner Sergio Perez.

"Hard Rock is thrilled to partner with Oracle Red Bull Racing and their culture of winning both on and off the track to bring more dynamic entertainment experiences to our fans,” said Hard Rock International Chairman Jim Allen. “This partnership represents our ongoing commitment to collaborations with the best in class in sports, music and entertainment."

The partnership with the F1 team sits alongside an existing allegiance with the NFL’s Miami Dolphins and a collaboration with soccer legend Lionel Messi. It also comes as F1’s popularity exponentially grows each year, especially within the US, which even led to gaming mecca Las Vegas being greenlighted to host racing beginning in 2023, on the iconic Vegas Strip. Also, MGM Resorts has reached an agreement to sell the operations of The Mirage Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas to Hard Rock for $1.075 billion in cash, which would see the first tribal operator on Las Vegas Strip. 

“Oracle Red Bull Racing is at the forefront of that explosion in interest in America, and now with Hard Rock International on board we can look forward to giving those fans an even more intense, immersive and engaging F1 experience,” added Red Bull Racing’s Horner.

The Miami Grand Prix is a planned Formula One Grand Prix due to form part of the 2022 Formula One World Championship, with the event taking place at the Miami International Autodrome on a ten-year contract. The circuit, designed and delivered by Formula One track designers Apex Circuit Design, was purpose-built for the event.

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