F1: Spanish Grand Prix Set to Return in 2020

Paul Jeffrey

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F1 Spanish Grand Prix Stays on 2020 F1 Schedule.jpg

Despite looking odds-on for a departure from the F1 calendar, the Spanish Grand Prix appears to have secured a stay of execution for the coming season.


With Formula One ever looking to expanding in to new territories under Liberty Media, and the teams reluctant to move beyond the 20 - 21 race schedule of recent years, several of the out-of-contract events have found themselves under significant pressure for their place on the calendar in recent months.

Of those without a deal for next season, the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya has long been touted as one of those expected to fall away from the schedule, a position made even more perilous following the departure of home hero and major crowd puller Fernando Alonso at the end of last season.

However, in surprise news today, it looks like the well-regarded Spanish round has secured the necessary funding and backing to secure a new one-year contract extension, keeping one of the more historic events on the expanding 2020 F1 schedule.

"The executive council has today authorised the Circuits de Catalunya, SL society to sign a one-year extension of the contract for the organisation of the F1 Spanish Grand Prix for the year 2020 with the Formula One World Championship Limited company," said the Govern de la Generalitat de Catalunya in a statement.​

"The subsequent signing guarantees the 30th consecutive event at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, in Montmelo.

"The F1 Grand Prix in Catalonia is an event that contributes to the positioning of Catalonia in the areas of tourism and the automotive industry.

"Its continuity will also allow the presence of the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya in the calendar of the main national and international motor competitions while a long-term strategic plan for the Circuit de Catalunya is drawn up."
With Spanish star Carlos Sainz gaining in confidence and pace as his McLaren team continue to make strides back up towards the front of the grid, it is indeed great news to see one of the more popular events retain a place on the calendar in the face of increasing expansion into new territories and lifeless Tilkedrome venues (with some exceptions, of course).

Considering Barcelona is now back on, this deal puts increasing pressure on Germany and Mexico, the two other countries currently thought to be under threat for the coming season.

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Filip Carlén

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Would rather see that Germany stays and Spain goes, never liked the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. I think both Hockenheim and Nurburg generate better racing. And they are much more fun to race in the F1-games ;)
 
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Would rather see that Germany stays and Spain goes, never liked the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. I think both Hockenheim and Nurburg generate better racing. And they are much more fun to race in the F1-games ;)
imo the spanish gp is one of the most fun to drive because it has everything, long straight, slow corners, fast ones, the only thing that is annoying me is the stupid chicane they made on last corner.. except that i love to drive on it as it is a very tricky track too, look at that long turn 3, it is a nightmare for your tires :D
As for real life, im glad they keep that track, i think the only "better racing" factor is the changing weather and not the track itself. I mean, you could make a simple circle as a race track and add the weather we had for the germany gp, then you would have an epic race as no one know what tires to use etc
 

Celtic Pharaoh

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I'm all for a Spanish GP but really wish they'd either switch to Jerez or at least alternate each year like they used to do with Suzuka and Fuji.
Jerez would offer greater overtaking opportunities than Barcelona
 

spizzlo

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"well regarded"? by who?? If Barcelona stays, and Germany goes, that would be really unfortunate. The tracks that don't fit well with modern F1 cars need to be dropped like a bad habit.
 
Well I suppose on the plus side, it's good Liberty Media are trying to keep races in Europe. Bernie was intent on taking F1 to China, Russia, India, etc. and although it was great in some respects it was removing F1 from it's traditional home if you like.

Catalunya is not a great circuit for racing but it is popular with spectators, it's in a good location and a lovely part of Europe and most fans I know who follow F1 go there quite often. Easy to get to, etc.

Personally I would prefer the circuit owners working on improving the run off areas and restore the circuit back to it's pre '94 layout. It was much faster then so even if the race was a bit dull you did get to see an F1 car flat out.

I agree though, it would be cool to get back to the idea of alternating venues, one year at Jerez, one at Catalunya, etc.
 
I'm all for a Spanish GP but really wish they'd either switch to Jerez or at least alternate each year like they used to do with Suzuka and Fuji.
Jerez would offer greater overtaking opportunities than Barcelona
Jerez is nicer yes. Catalunya is a kind of primitive layout that is typical of many tracks. We don't need another cookie cutter track we want something exiting.
That said a lot of British people go to Spain for vacation or to live. So there will be a lot of union jacks. Espeshaly if its in the summer vacation season.
 
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someone cares to explain whats up with the hate about this track ? or keep disagreeing a post when you see a red cross..

plenty of space to overtake, big straight, fast and technical corners, elevation changes...
i've seen less hate on the russian gp and THAT is a shitty track
 

randomcallsign

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I don't think the portugeese care about F1. Spain has a lot of tourists and people from England who will like a event in Summer. One stupid thing about F1 is they go places where no body cares about F1 thinking interest will grow, and it dose not. eg Turkey, India, China. And Portugual.
Well, when Formula 1 was at Estoril, it was always jam-packed, so that's not true.
Portugal has a *lot* of tourists from England and elsewhere (and it's even been considered one of the best tourist destinations in the world). The circuit is even close by three very popular English tourist destinations.
 
It's a shame that a great circuit like Hockenheim is under increasing pressure because of Barcelona being set to return to the calendar next year. The Circuit de Catalunya is pretty boring to watch and the racing is not particularly spectacular there, especially with the new generation of cars. I think it's a good test track but ultimately not the most ideal for F1 racing.
 
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Well, when Formula 1 was at Estoril, it was always jam-packed, so that's not true.
Portugal has a *lot* of tourists from England and elsewhere (and it's even been considered one of the best tourist destinations in the world). The circuit is even close by three very popular English tourist destinations.
Portimao is better than Estoril and is in the most touristic region of the country (Algarve).
I believe it was build to host F1 but the economical situation worsened.
 

NDG

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Removing myself from possibly politically backed comments, I think this track is still a classic. It's not much worse or better than Melbourne regarding track layout. It's always a welcome track on my list.

To people local there or near the place, I just wish you all the best, and may your favored track be included in the calendar sometime in the future. I also wish Imola back, but WTF. I don't know politics and noise annoyance situation of locals back there. So I'll just stay in front of the tele, keep my opinions to myself.
 
Are they going to smarten the #### up and stop having the race at the most ungodly hour for Spanish people. (mid day)
And make sense by moving it to a dusk/night race.
Always they start at 14:00 and always they complain about the heat, while never there is any Spanish person alive around noon.
It`s like the organisation has actually never been in Spain, and just go directly from the airport to the circuit, and go straight home after the GP has finished.

Also add some tarmac to the first corner and make the apex a lot sharper so one could effectively overtake ?

Maybe because it is also a test circuit have some relocatable curbstones to be able to change 1-3 corners.

Anyway there are a couple small changes that can make a lot of difference, if there is any will to make it a lot better.
 
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