Tavo Hellmund (b. February 24, 1966; Austin, Texas) is an American former racing driver and promoter. He was responsible for the United States Grand Prix held in Austin, Texas, with the first race having taken place 16–18 November 2012. Hellmund and his partners are responsible for building the 3.427-mile (5.513 km) Circuit of the Americas in Travis County, Texas. Tavo Hellmund is also responsible for bringing back the Mexican Grand Prix being held in Mexico City. Mexico, with the first race 30 October–1 November 2015.
Hellmund, a native of Austin, Texas, competed in the British Formula 3 Championship in 1995 and 1996, and won races in NASCAR, K&N Pro Series West, SCCA-sanctioned events, including the Winston West race in 2001.
Hellmund's father, Gustavo Hellmund-Rosas, was a racing promoter, having promoted the CART Copa Mexico 150 in 1980 and 1981. Tavo promoted the Texas Racefest, a NASCAR / USAC regional short-track event from 2005–2009.
United States Grand Prix
Hellmund's relationship with Bernie Ecclestone (CEO of Formula One Management and Formula One Administration) has spanned nearly 40 years.
In July 2010, Hellmund announced he had signed a deal with Formula One in April to return the United States Grand Prix to the F1 schedule in 2012. The Austin circuit was sketched then designed by Hellmund and engineered by Herman Tilke and Peter Wahl, whom he hired to complete the 5.513 km circuit.
Mexican Grand Prix
In July 2014, Bernie Ecclestone confirmed the Mexican Grand Prix would return to the F1 schedule in the 2015 Formula One season. The revived Mexican Grand Prix is driven by two key figures, Tavo Hellmund mastermind of the F1 USGP in Austin Texas and his counterpart in Mexico, Alejandro Soberon, chief executive of Grupo CIE.
On Sunday November 1, 2015 the Mexican Grand Prix welcomed a race-day attendance of 134,850, and the three-day mark was 335,850. Three-time world champion and current Mercedes chairman Niki Lauda told reporters after the Mexican Grand Prix, “It was the best I’ve ever seen in my whole life.” David Tremayne of the Straits Times wrote, ”Now, that's a serious audience. As an object lesson in how to organise a grand prix, Hellmund's team set a new benchmark, and for this, the sport should be grateful”. For the second consecutive year the 2016 Mexican Grand Prix was awarded event of the year. Bernie Ecclestone , CEO of Formula One Management (FOM), said "This is a recognition of the extraordinary promotion and organization of the Grand Prix and the incredible passion of the Mexican public. Mexico did it again!