F1 chief: Belgian Grand Prix could survive amid calendar changes

By Sports Desk August 25, 2022

Formula One chief executive Stefano Domenicali hinted the Belgian Grand Prix could remain part of the sport's calendar beyond this year amid speculation the Spa race is set to be cut.

Belgium will host the first race since late July on Sunday, with Max Verstappen and Red Bull looking to consolidate strong leads at the top of the standings.

Several changes to the F1 calendar are planned ahead of the 2023 season, with the maiden Las Vegas Grand Prix set to take place alongside returns for races in China and Qatar.

The Belgian Grand Prix, which has been a fixture in the calendar for several decades, had been slated as one of the races that could make way, but Domenicali insists such a decision is yet to be taken.

"You never saw something [from] me saying that Belgium will be the last year," he said.

"I would be prudent on that comment, I would say, I would be very prudent. That's the only thing I would say. It's true that we are working and discussing with other promoters to see if they're ready for a full commitment already.

"There has been always a point that we have discussed to find the mix of the races where we're going to have at least one third in Europe, one third in the Far East area, and the other one in the Americas and Middle East. So we want to be balanced.

"Of course, we're talking about a business where investment, the financial contribution, is very important, but we have always said that the traditional races, the races that we know cannot bring the money that the others are bringing, have full respect from us.

"There is a lot of respect for these places. But if you recall, Belgium, there were some periods where it was not in the calendar, and they came back again. The memory sometimes is short. It's a great place, no doubt about it. And that's why we are discussing."

Meanwhile, Domenicali revealed talks are ongoing concerning the future of the French Grand Prix, and said a race in Germany could be set to return to the calendar. 

"We are talking with the French federation, and with the government, because more and more the future also is related to promoters that see that as investment for the country, for the community," he added.

"So the discussions are very, very open for a great future. 

"We really hope that Germany can be back around the table. But one thing is to say is we'd like to have the [German] Grand Prix. The other thing is to put on the table the things that are needed to discuss about the Grand Prix.

"So hopefully soon – with something that could happen soon – they will have a different situation to discuss with us."

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