Three tracks dropped from F1 calendar

Comment on this story


IOL mot dec5 Korea GP

AFP

The Korean Grand Prix has been struck off the 2014 F1 calendar, along with Mexico and New Jersey.

London - Races in New Jersey, Mexico and South Korea were dropped from Formula One's official 2014 calendar on Wednesday, with the season remaining at 19 races instead of a record 22.

All three grands prix had been listed provisionally, with asterisks against them, on a previous calendar published in September by the sport's governing body, the FIA.

However, none appeared on the final version issued on Wednesday after a meeting of the FIA's World Motor Sports Council in Paris.

New Jersey's Grand Prix of the America, with New York's skyscraper skyline as a backdrop, had been due for a debut this year but that had to be postponed due to financial issues which continue to plague the race.

BIG APPLE GP IN 2015?

Organisers said they were working on “restructured financial arrangements” while the sport's hard-nosed commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone said he looked forward to “first-class inaugural Grand Prix of America in 2015”.

“There is great demand for a race in New Jersey and I have no doubt we'll be racing at Port Imperial in 2015,” Ecclestone said in a joint statement with Grand Prix of America.

“New races can take many years to get started, but there is significant momentum and we are close to realizing a New York City F1 race.”

MEXICO NOT READY

Mexico would have been making its return in November after a 22-year absence but there have been doubts over the readiness of the Mexico City track.

The poorly-attended Korean race, one of the least popular among Formula One's travelling fraternity, has sustained heavy losses.

Organisers, whose race at Yeongam in the far south was due to be moved from October to April, had sought a contract re-negotiation with Ecclestone.

AUSTRIA IS BACK

India has also been axed from the 2014 calendar, although race promoters are hoping to return in 2015, while Austria is back after a decade away and Russia hosts a race for the first time in next year's Winter Olympic city of Sochi.

The revised calendar led to a reshuffling of some date and teams will be particularly relieved not to have the logistical headache of a 'triple header' of Monaco, New Jersey and Canada to contend with on successive weekends in May and June.

The cancellation of Mexico, which would have been the penultimate race, sees Brazil's Interlagos and Abu Dhabi's Yas Marina swap places with the Middle East circuit now due to end the season on Nov. 23.

The absence of New Jersey, while expected, will be the biggest blow for a sport still battling for more than a niche profile in the United States, a major market for carmakers like Mercedes and Ferrari.

Most teams were reluctant to extend the season beyond 20 races, fearful for the impact of the increased burden on staff like engineers and mechanics as well as higher costs if more people had to be hired to cope.

The United States already has one popular grand prix in Austin, Texas. -Reuters

2014 FORMULA ONE CALENDAR

March 16: Australia (Melbourne)

March 30: Malaysia (Sepang)

April 6: Bahrain (Sakhir)

April 20: China (Shanghai)

May 11: Spain (Barcelona)

May 25: Monaco (Monte Carlo)

June 8: Canada (Montreal)

June 22: Austria (Red Bull Ring)

July 6: Great Britain (Silverstone)

July 20: Germany (Hockenheim)

July 27: Hungary (Budapest)

August 24: Belgium (Spa-Francorchamps)

September 7: Italy (Monza)

September 21: Singapour (Marina Bay)

October 5: Japan (Suzuka)

October 12: Russia (Sochi)

November 2: United States (Austin)

November 9: Brazil (Interlagos, Sao Paulo)

November 23: Abu Dhabi (Yas Marina)


sign up
 
 

Comment Guidelines



  1. Please read our comment guidelines.
  2. Login and register, if you haven’ t already.
  3. Write your comment in the block below and click (Post As)
  4. Has a comment offended you? Hover your mouse over the comment and wait until a small triangle appears on the right-hand side. Click triangle () and select "Flag as inappropriate". Our moderators will take action if need be.

     

Join us on

IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks IOL-Social networks

Business Directory