COTA officials confirm F1 race at track for 2016; Taylor Swift will be musical guest

NOVEMBER 2, 2014: Mercedes AMG Petronas' Lewis Hamilton goes into Turn 11 with the tower in the background during the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix 2014 held at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, on Sunday, November 2, 2014. (RODOLFO GONZALEZ / AMERICAN-STATESMAN)

Mercedes AMG Petronas’ Lewis Hamilton goes into Turn 11 with the tower in the background during the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix 2014. (RODOLFO GONZALEZ / AMERICAN-STATESMAN)

At a Wednesday morning press conference in downtown Austin, Circuit of the Americans officials confirmed that there will be a Formula One race at the track in 2016 on Oct. 23.

The United States Grand Prix had previously been given a “subject to confirmation” tag when F1 officials released the 2016 race calendar in December 2015.

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Attendance has sagged for the first four USGPs held at COTA, and last year’s race was marred by torrential downpours that caused delays in qualifying.

After, officials at track said they were financially strapped after storms wiped out much of the 2015 race weekend as reports surfaced that the Texas governor’s office was cutting public funding for the event by about 20 percent. The state of Texas has supported the race through the state’s Major Events Trust fund. The first year of the race, Texas gave $25 million to track officials.

In November 2015, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s office told track officials they would get about $19.5 million from the state for the 2016 race because officials changed formulas used to award grants to make them more restrictive.

In February, track officials and the Travis County Appraisal District reached a settlement on valuation of the appraised value of the F1 racetrack by more than $180 million for 2015, which will save the track’s owners millions in property tax payments. COTA officials had been appealing a $275.4 million valuation for 2015. TCAD agreed to lower the appraised value to $91.2 million.