The story of the Mexican Grand Prix dates back to 1959 when the then President, Adolfo Lopez Mateo, listened to one of his advisers, the father of the most famous Mexican drivers, Ricardo and Pedro Rodriguez.
The president thus had the circuit built and today it carries the name of the two Rodriguez brothers and is located inside the Magdalena Mixiuhca sports complex in Mexico City, making use of existing roads. F1 in Mexico came into being not long after, in 1962 in fact, when motorsport’s blue riband category took part in a non-championship race.
The following year, the Mexican Grand Prix was officially part of the calendar and was won by Jim Clark. From then on there were 20 more races, all at the Mexico City track, in three blocks from 1963-1970, 1986-1992 and then from 2015 to the present day.
The Mexican GP is less scary
However, the new track layout is very different. Inevitably, when a track needs modifying, circuit designer Hermann Tilke was called in to get the job done. The original track was known as a real test of courage and commitment from the drivers and its high speed nature has been retained in the new version.
Sadly for traditionalists, its most famous and scary corner, the Peraltada, no longer exists because there was no room to build a modern-standard run-off area. The track now runs through a nearby baseball stadium!
A very enthusiastic and large crowd fills those stadium seats and the rest of the grandstands, because the Mexicans love our sport and they have made “Formula 1 Mexico” an unmissable event for the boisterous local fans. But spectators also come from abroad to enjoy one of the most vibrant and lively cities in the world.
In fact, the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, in the east of the Mexican capital, is easily reachable by a metro link to the city centre: a perfect opportunity for a weekend mixing sport and culture.
The 2017 and 2018 editions of the Mexican GP were both won by our former driver Max Verstappen for Red Bull Racing, which means he joins an exclusive club of double Mexico F1 wins, alongside Jim Clark, Alain Prost and Nigel Mansell. Lewis Hamilton won the 2019 Mexican GP, the 2020 edition having been cancelled because of the Covid-19 pandemic.