United States

When the US Grand Prix was staged in the Caesars Palace parking lot

(CNN)Las Vegas is home to high rollers and risk takers -- but when Formula One rode into America's playground in the early Eighties, the stakes got even higher. For two strange seasons, in 1981 and 1982, the world championship was decided by the Caesars Palace Grand Prix.It sounded opulent and grand and, for once, the roulette tables weren't the only fortune-makers -- or fortune-breakers -- spinning round and round the famous hotel and casino. "It was great to be in Vegas," America's 1978 F1 world champion Mario Andretti tells CNN. "Because of what Vegas has to offer as far as extravagance outside the race."It became a nice event per se because of all the amenities that the city has to offer."Hot, hedonistic and high-flying, there was plen ...