Lewis Hamilton hit with ban ahead of F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton is preparing to compete in the F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix for the very first time

Jack Otway

By Jack Otway

Published: 14/11/2023

- 08:54

The Briton is hoping to win a first race in nearly two years

Mercedes chief Toto Wolff has revealed he's banned Lewis Hamilton and other members of the team from gambling in Nevada this weekend.

The Silver Arrows and their team are currently preparing for Sunday's Las Vegas Grand Prix.

Mercedes are hoping to finish second in the Constructors' Championship this year, despite their issues on the grid.

Hamilton is yet to win a race since his controversial defeat to Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi nearly two years ago.

Mercedes F1 Toto Wolff

Lewis Hamilton and other Mercedes staff have been banned from gambling by Toto Wolff


Las Vegas is a city known for it's gambling, with the region home to some of the glitziest casinos on the planet.

Casinos across Nevada brought in $14.8billion in gambling revenue in 2022 - which is a new annual record.

And Wolff has now revealed he's slapped Mercedes staff with a gambling ban as Sunday's race creeps closer.

Speaking to Motorsport.com Spain, he said: "I think everyone is looking forward to the Las Vegas race.

“Racing in this city is comparable to climbing Everest, hats off to Liberty Media for organising this race.

"I don't think I'm the only one in Formula One who has never been to this city, which is quite difficult to get around.

“We don't know how to get from the hotel to the circuit and back, but I'm sure we'll find a solution.

"I'm looking forward to the race.”

When quizzed about the possibility of any betting, he added: "As I said, I've never been to Las Vegas, but we'll do our best to make sure everyone in the team stays away from the casinos.

"I don't gamble and I'll make sure no one else gambles either!"

The Vegas Grand Prix will be the first F1 event to be held in the city since the 1980s.

Therefore, Mercedes are venturing into the unknown as they look to consolidate their spot in second.

Hamilton has spoken ahead of the race on Sunday and is impressed by the way F1 has grown in the United States in recent years.

“I think it's [about] continuing to engage with the outside world and, and as I was mentioned before, really creating more accessibility,” he stated.

“I think before, when I used to come out to the States, like 2007, the first time out here, and for many, many years, every time we stepped for that one race, that sometimes did and sometimes didn't happen in the years, you always find yourself just repeating yourself, educating.

“I couldn’t fully understand when I went to NFL games, NBA games, seeing how passionate the Americans are about sport, how they hadn't yet caught the bug that many of us grew up catching when we were younger.

“And so it's been really, really amazing to see that so many, the whole country, really, a large portion of the country is now speaking about it. "People own simulators, everyone wants to be a driver! So, it's been great to see.”

Max Verstappen is already the F1 champion for this season.

However, he sounded unenthused when asked about competing in Vegas for the first time.

He said: "First of all, I think we are there more for the show than the racing itself if you look at the layout of the track.


Lewis Hamilton F1

Lewis Hamilton is yet to win a race this season as the F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix creeps closer


“But you know, I’m actually not that into it. I’m more like, I’ll go there and do my thing and be gone again.”

When asked if the race could be compared to the Monaco Grand Prix, Verstappen proceeded to dismiss that notion.

“Yes, but Monaco is also just history and the place itself," he said.

"Everyone wants to have been to Monaco once. You can’t really compare.”

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