Madrid Circuit Doesn't Have To Be End Of Barcelona Suggests F1 CEO Domenicali

F1
by Adam OndrikTuesday, 23 January 2024 at 23:00
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The president and CEO of Formula 1, Stefano Domenicali, suggested that Madrid Circuit and Circuit de Catalunya could both be part of F1's calendar at the same time.
A new venue for hosting Grand Prix races that will be part of the F1 calendar has just been announced. The Madrid Circuit is set to host the Spanish Grand Prix from the 2026 season onwards.
The problem is that there is another venue in Spain - Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya- that has a contract with F1 to be part of the calendar until the end of the 2026 season.
F1 had 22 Grand Prix races in 2023, and many complained about the busy schedule. In 2024, this number will increase to 24 races, and many drivers have already expressed their strong disapproval of the addition of more races to the calendar.
So the announcement of the new track either means that F1 plans to get rid of one of the circuits or that the calendar is to be extended even further to more than 24 Grand Prix races per season. Domenicali told Formula 1:

"For the avoidance of doubt and to clarify here, the fact we are in Madrid is not excluding the fact we could stay in Barcelona for the future."

The F1 president didn't mention his plans in relation to other circuits but suggested there is no reason why there couldn't be two races in Spain.

"Looking ahead, there are discussions in place to see if we can really extend our collaboration with Barcelona, with whom we have a very good relationship, for the future."

The Grand Prix in Madrid is expected to bring annual revenues of 450 million euros for the city. As Domenicali says, Spain has become an attractive market for F1 over the last few years.

"Spain was a market that just a couple of years ago, was not in the centre of our eyes. Now it is very important."

Italy currently has two circuits in the F1 calendar, and that might be about to change before the season of 2026, as both of them have contracts that last only until the end of 2025. Could we see the Marid replacing traditional tracks like Imola or Monza in the calendar moving forward?