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Formula One draws global crowd to Austin

CBS Austin

Thousands from across the globe and right here in Austin packed the track at Circuit of the Americas to watch history being made at the US Grand Prix.

“They tell you everything in Texas is bigger and they’re not wrong," said Zena, from England but now lives in Seattle.

From across the pond, to Austin.

“I think it’s pretty fantastic. You know we have everything like ACL, SXSW, this just adds something else to it," said UT Student Sean Penkethman who sat with his boots and cowboy hat relaxing in an inflatable chair.

The track in Texas is all the talk of the F1 race world.

“How many compliments have you gotten on your boots and your hat?" asked CBS Austin Reporter Lindsay Liepman.

"Not too many yet," said Penkethman who said he was staying put in his spot to watch the race.

Penkethman has been to the US Grand Prix for three years and says each year is a better fan experience.

“I really like who they picked for the concerts. I think it’s changing it up. And I like how it’s changed the past few years," he said.

From simulated race car driving to getting to change the tires in the "pit", this year's fan focus means there's more to do.

“This year’s focus means there’s more for the fans to do.”

“It’s amazing. The atmosphere is great. It’s nice that the sun come out as well," said one couple from England.

Russell and his son Will live in Austin but are from England and huge Lewis Hamilton fans.

“We came last year and you said it was the best day of your life, didn’t you Will?” said Russell.

Growing the fan base and attracting a new generation, is exactly what Formula 1 wants, to stay ahead of the pack and keep breaking records at COTA.

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