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'US Needs a Formula One Race': Mario Andretti
| March 16, 2012 | 02:12 AM EDT

For the first time since 2007, the United State Grand Prix is returning to the calendar. Twelve Formula One teams and 24 drivers will be heading to Austin, Texas from November 16-18 for the US Grand Prix this year.

“Formula 1 needs to be in the United States on solid ground, and the U.S. needs a Formula One race.” Mario Andretti, Hall of Fame Formula One, IndyCar and NASCAR driver and founder of the Andretti Racing Experience, told CNBC.

Andretti emphasized that F1 is a huge asset to the cities where races are held. Before F1 left Indianapolis in 2007, their races brought crowds from 90,000 to 225,000. 2010 was a record season for F1 with a TV audience of 527 million. Over 16,000 hours of F1 coverage was telecast to 187 countries.

As a growing global industry, F1 generates over $4 billion a year in revenue. “With the Circuit de Americas in Austin and the planned event for 2013 in New Jersey, you have two US Grand Prix for the first time and it’s going to be awesome,” Andretti said.

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