F1’s Vegas Comeback Takes a Hit: Las Vegas Grand Prix’s FP1 Canceled After Manhole Cover Mayhem

F1 Nightmare Unfolds in Vegas as Practice Session Abandoned as Sainz and Ocon Face Car Damage Image
Source: Sky Sports

Las Vegas Grand Prix’s FP1 Canceled After Manhole Cover Mayhem. In a startling setback to Formula 1’s highly anticipated return to Las Vegas, the inaugural Grand Prix faced a tumultuous opening.

The first practice session was abruptly canceled after a severe incident that took place on the track. 

The chaos unfolded when a broken drain cover wreaked havoc on the cars of Carlos Sainz and Esteban Ocon, prompting strong reactions from Ferrari’s team boss Frederic Vasseur

The incident not only casts a shadow on the event’s grandeur but also raises serious questions about track preparation and the unforeseen challenges of racing on the iconic Las Vegas Strip Circuit.

Las Vegas Grand Prix’s FP1 Canceled After Manhole Cover Mayhem

In a shocking turn of events at the inaugural 2023 Las Vegas GP, the much-anticipated FP1 was abruptly canceled after only 8 minutes, marred by manhole cover mayhem. 

The chaotic scene unfolded as a broken drain cover inflicted severe damage on the Ferrari and Alpine cars of Sainz and Ocon, prompting strong reactions. 

The incident not only disrupted the session but also raised questions about the track’s readiness for Formula 1’s return to the iconic Las Vegas circuit.

Details of the Incident

The pivotal moment came when a broken manhole cover caused a red flag, abruptly ending the session. 

The cars of Esteban Ocon and Carlos Sainz bore the brunt, suffering significant damage, casting a cloud over the much-anticipated return to the Las Vegas Strip Circuit.

Las Vegas GP FP1 Results

1Charles LeclercScuderiaFerrari1:40.909
2Nico HulkenbergHaas Ferrari1:43.446
3Kevin MagnussenHaas Ferrari1:44.261
4Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing1:44.397
5Esteban OconAlpine1:45.365
6George RussellMercedes1:45.497
7Carlos SainzScuderiaFerrari1:45.824
8Yuki TsunodaAlphaTauri1:45.908
9Sergio PerezRed Bull Racing1:46.793
10Valtteri BottasAlfa Romeo1:47.147
11Pierre GaslyAlpine1:48.253
12Lewis HamiltonMercedes1:48.513
13Danile RicciardoAlphaTauri1:48.650
14Zhou GuanyuAlfa Romeo1:48.822
15Lando NorrisMcLaren1:48.947
16Lance StrollAston Martin
17Oscar PiastriMcLaren
18Alex AlbonWilliams
19Fernando AlonsoAston Martin

FIA’s Response and Inspection

In the aftermath of the Las Vegas Grand Prix’s FP1 chaos, the FIA’s response and inspection took center stage. 

Following the red flag incident caused by a broken drain cover, the FIA swiftly addressed the situation. 

The focus shifted to a meticulous inspection, investigating the failure of the concrete frame around a manhole cover

The uncertainty loomed as discussions unfolded regarding the duration of checks and any potential alterations to the event’s schedule.

Team Reactions

In the aftermath of the Las Vegas Grand Prix’s FP1 turmoil, team reactions echoed the shock and dismay felt across the paddock. 

Ferrari team boss Frederic Vasseur voiced his discontent, deeming the incident “unacceptable” as he revealed the extent of damage to Carlos Sainz’s car—damaged chassis, engine, and battery

Impact on Cars and Teams

The fallout from the Vegas’ FP1 chaos extends beyond the canceled session, with a tangible impact on cars and teams

Notably, Sainz’s Ferrari faced significant damage to the front of the floor, emphasizing the severity of the broken drain cover incident.

Alfa Romeo’s Zhou Guanyu and Alpine’s Esteban Ocon also grappled with the repercussions, highlighting the unforeseen challenges and setbacks faced by teams in this untimely turn of events.

Consequences and Setbacks

Beyond the immediate blow to the event’s image, the severe damage to Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari, coupled with challenges faced by Alfa Romeo’s Zhou Guanyu and Alpine’s Esteban Ocon, paints a grim picture. 

Teams now grapple with not just a disrupted schedule but also the financial and logistical repercussions of this untimely mancover incident.

Historical Context of Manhole Cover Mayhem

The incident during the Las Vegas Grand Prix’s FP1 adds a layer of historical context, harking back to the 2019 Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Just like Carlos Sainz, George Russell and his Mercedes were unlucky during the 2019 Azerbaijain Grand Prix.

The challenges faced by modern F1 cars and the potential implications underscore the importance of addressing these issues comprehensively to prevent reoccurrence.

Also Read: From the Track to the Battle Bus: Lewis Hamilton Makes a Pit Stop in Fortnite!

FIA’s Ongoing Discussions

Amid the aftermath of the race’s FP1 turmoil, the FIA’s ongoing discussions become pivotal. 

The focus shifts to exploring all possible scenarios, with uncertainties surrounding the schedule and the extent of manhole cover issues across the track

The duration of checks and potential alterations to the event’s timeline remain subjects of ongoing deliberation.


In conclusion, the Las Vegas Grand Prix’s FP1 chaos leaves an indelible mark on the anticipated return to the iconic circuit. 

The abrupt cancellation, triggered by a broken drain cover, not only exposes immediate challenges but prompts critical reflections on track preparedness and historical parallels. 

As the FIA engages in ongoing discussions to address the issues, the incident serves as a stark reminder of the unpredictability inherent in the world of Formula 1, urging a comprehensive approach to ensure the integrity and safety of future races on the famed Las Vegas Strip Circuit.

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