Mark Sprague On The F1 Track


Mark Sprague, Mission Mortgage of Texas, Inc.Mark Sprague is a noted and respected expert on the real estate industry and the Austin market, in particular. He is also the Director of Business Development for Mission Mortgage and we are fortunate to have access to his expertise and opinions. Recently, Mark was asked for his views on the proposed Formula 1 race track planned for Southeast Austin.  Here are the questions and Mark’s responses:



Question – What are the direct economic impacts of building the F1 track?

Answer – Starting with the engineering and construction of the actual site, we will see added spending on labor in our local market area. When you consider all aspects of the track, it is clear that architects, planners, surveyors, civil engineers, traffic engineers, structural engineers, general contractors, construction firms, HVAC companies, electrical engineers, and many others will be needed to complete the entire site. All of those lead to local jobs paying employees who will spend money in the local economy. Construction alone is expected to account for over 1000 jobs using 17 participating companies.

Once the track is built, the F1 race itself is predicted to generate 120,000 fans spending as much as $270 million in our local area. In addition, other events at the site are estimated to generate as much as $400 million in additional spending every year. MotoGP (the top international motorcycle racing circuit) has already expressed an interest and the facilities are being designed to accommodate large concerts, corporate events, and additional racing or auto-related activities.

Aerial Photo of F1 Track Under Construction in Austin, Texas

Question – What peripheral impacts can we expect from the F1 track?

Answer – Like all real estate, the ‘Circuit of the Americas’ is a real estate development.  It is not just about one or two ‘mega races’ but about all the other events and businesses that will be attracted there.  Much like a Golf course or a convention center, race tracks recruit new support businesses.  Besides the race revenues, we can expect an impact from new resort hotels and convention centers, automobile research centers, real estate services, engineering and construction firms, restaurants, catering, security and general support services. 

Circuit of the Americas

Question – What non-economic impact will the track have on Austin?

Answer – Primarily, exposure. The track would generate an estimated $200 million in television exposure every year…exposure that the City of Austin does not need to purchase. Remember, F1 is internationally popular, so exposure would extend around the globe. The track will change how Austin is viewed in the global economy.  Just last week Austin was mentioned in an article in Sports Illustrated about the F1 track.  Advertising in a major circulation periodical like Sports Illustrated is not cheap and being mentioned in the context of an article, rather than an ad, is profoundly more powerful.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, over 560,000 people are expected to move to the Austin area in the next 10 years.  This figure was determined without consideration of the F1 track and it’s impact on the local economy. As the Census Bureau is generally conservative in its predictions, we could see a much higher number when all is said and done.

Question – How does the F1 track help the local community?

Answer – The track will bring jobs.  The track will bring tax revenues. The track will attract more people to the area, some of whom will start new businesses and hire local employees. The track will bring greater exposure to our area, which will help boost our position in the world.  All of this trickles down to every person in Austin.

Mark would like to thank the people who show a genuine interest in what he is saying and he appreciates the questions that he has been receiving. If you have questions that you’d like Mark Sprague to answer, please send them to us at  Even if we don’t post your question on our blog, we’ll get you an answer.
Mark also invites you to subscribe to his weekly online newsletter, The Mission Statement, where he discusses a wide array of topics relating to the Austin market, especially with respect to housing and real estate. He also discusses national and statewide trends and facts.  To learn more, please visit

About missionmortgage

A full-service professional mortgage banker providing lending in Texas for over 25 years. Our main office is located at 901 S. Mopac Expwy, Barton Oaks V- Suite 120, Austin, TX 78746 with branches in Lakeway, Houston, and Sealy. Mission Mortgage has been ranked as a Top 10 Mortgage Company in Austin for the past 7 years (Austin Business Journal).
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2 Responses to Mark Sprague On The F1 Track

  1. My Family lives in East Austin. I am the Economic Development Director for the City of Leander. Mr. Sprague’s comprehensive, ‘trickle-down’ perspective about Circuit of the Americas (CotA) influence is right on. CotA, and its associated sports & entertainment activities, will enhance the Global reputation of Austin and Central Texas. Austin will achieve name recognition typically reserved for very few cities on Earth.

    This Global awareness will expose Central Texas to even more business development opportunities. Austin and its regional partners will be able to diversify their economic base further, create broader opportunities for jobs and expand entrepreneurial development. This will be accomplished through massive capital investment, an influx of sales, hotel/motel & other visitor taxes and expanded name recognition of the region’s business community.

    The support of CotA is another step by Austin to retain & expand existing business, relocate prospective development and enhance the region’s quality of life. CotA is another resource for the region’s development future.

    • Thank you, Mr. Clennan, for your comments. On behalf of Mark Sprague, we truly appreciate you taking the time to read our blog post and provide your insight into this incredible opportunity for our area. The tax revenue, job growth, global exposure, and entertainment for our local residents will serve our community for years to come. Yesterday’s vote by the Austin City Council was a huge step in moving the project forward and we applaud the council for coming to the right decision for the good of our entire metropolitan area.

      We’re excited to watch the track take shape and we eagerly await the first F1 event!

      ~ Michael Ikeya, Marketing Coordinator for Mission Mortgage of Texas, Inc.

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