November 16, 2012 at 19:26 PM EST
Circuit of The Americas(tm) welcomes 65,360 fans to first day of the FORMULA 1 UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX

Austin, Texas, Nov. 16, 2012 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Circuit of The Americas today welcomed a massive first-day crowd of 65,360 to the 2012 FORMULA 1 UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX.  Race goers were treated to a spectacle of sound and color as Formula 1™ drivers took to the Grade 1, 3.4-mile circuit for the very first time.

Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel, current points leader in the drivers' world championship standings, produced the best time of the day during the second of two 90-minute practice sessions, recording a sizzling lap time of 1:37.718.  His teammate, Mark Webber, posted the second-best time of 1:38.475.

The FORMULA 1 UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX continues Saturday, Nov. 17, with the final free practice session beginning at 9 a.m. CST and three rounds of knock-out qualifying starting at noon.  Gates open at 7:30 a.m. Following the races, Collective Soul will entertain fans with a free concert in the Grand Plaza, located near the track's main entrance off Circuit of The Americas Blvd.

High-resolution images of today's practice sessions are available for download at www.circuitoftheamericas.com/media-center.

About Circuit of The Americas

Circuit of The Americas is a world-class destination for performance, education and business. It is the first purpose-built Grand Prix facility in the United States designed for any and all classes of racing, from motor power to human power, and is home to the 2012 FORMULA 1 UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX™ set for Nov. 16-18. Racing series joining the Circuit's 2013 line-up include MotoGP™, V8 Supercars™ and GRAND-AM Road Racing™.  The Circuit of The Americas' master plan features a variety of permanent structures designed for business, education, entertainment and race use. Its signature element is a 3.4-mile circuit track. Other support buildings include an expansive outdoor live music space, an iconic 251-foot tower with observation deck, an events and conference center, a banquet hall as well as a state-of-the-art medical facility. For more information and downloadable video, audio and photos, visit: www.CircuitofTheAmericas.com.

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Photos accompanying this release are available at:
http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=15842
http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=15843
http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=15844
http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=15845

CONTACT: Julie Loignon
         Julie.Loignon@circuitoftheamericas.com
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