Mexican Grand Prix eyes 360,000 crowd for 2016

The boss of the Mexican Grand Prix believes it can increase its 2016 attendance to 360,000 fans, bucking Formula 1's trend for declining crowds

Mexican Grand Prix eyes 360,000 crowd for 2016

First-year F1 events inevitably attract considerable attention and spectator interest, with Mexico no exception as a three-day crowd of 330,000 came to its first GP in 23 years.

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Attendance figures at newer grands prix have generally then dwindled as the novelty factor wears off.

But Alejandro Soberon said his Mexico City venue is already looking at erecting additional grandstands and planning for an increased 2016 crowd.

"We're really going to shoot for 360,000 people next year," Soberon told Autosport.

"We're going to try to find additional capacity, with the Esses an area where we are thinking we could put some people.

"Given the word of mouth, and the level of interest we received from the people who are willing to buy a ticket for next year, we think the second year is going to be more successful than the first, and I know that rarely happens in Formula 1.

"But it's the same with a girlfriend - you have to give her a great excuse to come back to you every day. If you do that, they tend to stay.

"This year we went with a particular level of service for the people because we knew we had to make them happy.

"That level of service had to be more than the race itself. It had to be about the overall experience."

Soberon feels there are areas for improvement, particularly with regard to traffic management - an ongoing issue for the area.

But Soberon would like to believe lessons were learned this year to avoid a repeat in 2016.

"With regard to the traffic, we'll find a way to improve and try to do a better job next year," added Soberon.

"I must say, for an event that drew almost 330,000 people over a weekend, the traffic was one of the things that was difficult to avoid.

"But if you see how the level of service progressed from Friday to Saturday, and then from Saturday to Sunday, it was amazing.

"You can't forget it was an organisation of around 8000 people working that weekend, with 6000 temporary.

"I just believe everything will run even more smoothly next year, and of course we can increase the level of service in every single detail.

"For next year everybody will be more understanding, particularly after this year when we became more savvy from one day to the next, discovering everything the grand prix could offer.

"And next year we will have two Mexican drivers on the grid [Sergio Perez and Esteban Gutierrez], so it be amazing. Next year will be bigger and better."

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