No Canadian GP on 2009 F1 calendar

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

The 2009 F1 calendar has no space for the Canadian Grand Prix
The 2009 F1 calendar has no space for the Canadian Grand Prix

The Canadian Grand Prix has been dropped from the 2009 F1 calendar in a shock move as the FIA published full details of next year’s schedule.

No reason has been given for the deletion of the Montreal race, held at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

The Canadian round has been plagued by problems with its surface at recent races, which were especially severe during this year’s Grand Prix.

But there had been no prior indication that the round might be dropped. The race was on the provisional 2009 F1 calendar. It was last missing from the calendar in 1987 due to sponsorship reasons.

Canada’s absence means next year’s calendar has 18 races instead of 19.

The FIA has not explained why the Canadian round has been dropped. It’s one of the most popular and well-attended races on the F1 calendar, held at a distinctive track which has been part of the F1 calendar for three decades.

Canada has loads of dedicated F1 fans and even though it hasn’t had an F1 driver since Jacques Villeneuve two years ago they’ve continued to support their Grand Prix. It’s a terrible shame Montreal is no longer on the calendar, and that F1 now has no North American round at all.

2009 F1 calendar

Rnd Date Event Circuit
1 27-29 March Australian Grand Prix Albert Park, Mebourne
2 3-5 April Malaysian Grand Prix Sepang International Circuit
3 17-19 April Bahrain Grand Prix Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir
4 8-10 May Spanish Grand Prix Montmelo, Circuit de Catalunya, Barcelona
5 21-24 May Monaco Grand Prix Monte-Carlo
10 5-7 June Turkish Grand Prix Istanbul Park
6 19-21 June British Grand Prix Silverstone
7 26-28 June French Grand Prix Magny-Cours
8 10-12 July German Grand Prix Nurburgring
9 24-26 July Hungarian Grand Prix Hungaroring
11 21-23 August European Grand Prix Valencia Street Circuit
12 28-30 August Belgian Grand Prix Spa-Francorchamps
13 11-13 September Italian Grand Prix Autodromo Nazionale Monza
14 25-27 September Singapore Grand Prix Singapore Street Circuit (night race)
15 9-11 October Japanese Grand Prix Suzuka
16 16-18 October Chinese Grand Prix Shanghai International Circuit
17 30 October – 1 November Brazilian Grand Prix Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace, Interlagos, Sao Paulo
18 13-15 November Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Yas Island

2009 F1 season
2009 F1 calendar

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96 comments on “No Canadian GP on 2009 F1 calendar”

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  1. Don’t think it’s Mr M this time.

    Following my theme of commenting on the machinations of our Bernie Boy, I’ll repeat what I implied in the ‘clowns’ thread… He really is only interested in big bucks. History ? Historic Driver Associations ? Spectacular Locations ? Stunning Track designs ? Bernie’s not remotely interested. Silverstone….huh? Nurburgring Nah ! American Market Nuts ! Montreal Ditto ! Melbourne Ditto….. Get the picture.

    Time somebody from Mezzo-Giorno region sent some of da boys round… give hime somma friendly advice…maybe an offer he can’t refuse heh….. ?

  2. In the brazilian press, this fact was commented as a result of F1 cutting-costs measures, because, once the US Grand Prix was dropped, it became to expensive to head to North American for an one-off race in the middle of the European season… have you heard anything about that?

  3. In the brazilian press, this fact was commented as a result of F1 cutting-costs measures, because, once the US Grand Prix was dropped, it became to expensive to head to North American for an one-off race in the middle of the European season… have you heard anything about that?

    Certainly seems in agreement with the analysis of – the loss of Indy meant the two tracks couldn’t share the freight burden, and combined with the credit crunch/financial times has just made it too expensive for Canada…

    Of course, Bernie/FOM could drop the demands a bit in order to have a North American race – but they won’t.

  4. Finally, Bernie has gotten what he couldn’t get in ’06 and obviously has found a new and sordid way to line his pockets with UAE green (or gold)! By removing the Canadian GP without giving an excuse makes it quite clear to this Canadian that the FIA is a sanctimonious group of malcontents bent on making too much money and not delivering a decent product to its (North American) fans.

    RIP Gilles, a bientĂ´t mon ami!

  5. Sucks big time. Great track, generally liked by the drivers. Oh well at least we have Valencia to take its spiritual place??? :\

    Maybe the invisible (to some) traffic lights were the nail in the coffin?

  6. Wow I am still in awe of this news, I cannot believe this happened. Damn the FIA, damn Bernie, damn Max. This is just plain BS man. I want to know what the people from Montreal think of this stupid, greedy and very sad news. They will be losing millions if not more in tourism because of this. This is an outrage!!!!!!

  7. If the teams/FIA/FOA wanted to restore a summer break, I’d vote for killing the race in Turkey instead of dropping into Canada’s slot in June.

    I guess Bernie gets to save some air freight. I’m so angry about this.

  8. To say I experienced absolute shock when I read the news on this subject today is an understatement- I had always presumed Montreal was safe, and Bernie’s comments at Spa gave me a good feeling that F1 would soon be returning to the U.S. and the North American markey was perhaps set for an F1 resurgence…..

    Now, the only question is who to blame for what I can only see as a deliberate attempt to kill off the North American market and fanbase. If Bernie really wanted to give the teams their 3-week break, he could have started or ended the season a week earlier or later. Instead, he chose to use the occasion to get rid of another GP that has been on his chopping block for some time now, and in turn demonstrate his intentions to further isolate the Canadian/American fanbase.

    As it stands now, many parties lose out. While the teams got their precious 3-week break, they must surely be furious over the complete loss of exposure in North America. The drivers get robbed of a great track that has in the last two seasons seen the maiden wins for two of the sport’s budding stars. The Montreal area now mourns along with their friends in Indy at the loss of millions in revenue that the GP broguth in. But in the end, no one loses more than the fans, as now the hundreds of millions of potential followers here in Canada and the U.S. have exactly ZERO races to attend on home soil.

    Looking ahead, I think Mexico may have a shot at getting a date, as Max has a good buddy in the FIA hierarchy who is pushing for it. But for the upper 2/3 of North America, the only other option I can see is a Vegas street race where the backers pay straight into Bernie’s pocker a la Singapore and Abu Dhabi.

    Indeed, a sad day for Formula 1.

  9. F1 is losing it’s roots,U.S. GP,France is going,now Canada,Silverstone,it is all about money!That sickens me.One of the reasons that I got passionate about F1 was its strong and interesting history.

    No North American GP….I am never going to see a live F1 race at this pace……..bite me FIA.


  10. I am a stunned and disgusted as everybody here on this site at the news of the loss of the Canadian Grands Prix, and the anger expressed on here today is completely justified, however, I think it is too early to come to any conclusions.
    In the world of Bernie Ecclestone, it would suit him to have as many grands prix as possible, and a longer championship, as it would mean more money. However, I have often wondered how the teams, and drivers, have felt on this subject, and the limit to how long an F1 season should be.
    With the sudden influx of new venues since 2004, it was inevitable that certain, well established races would face the axe. Silverstone and Magny Cours are too well known examples, but Canada always appeared to be safe.
    One conclusion that I can draw from this situation, is a return in some form of an United States grands prix for 2010, which would fall within the twenty race limit, that many feel is the cutoff point.
    I was interested in reading an article recently concerning Giancarlo Fisichella’s opinion about F1 extending the calender beyond twenty races in a season.
    I was quite surprised that he was so dead against more races than twenty, saying that it would be beyond the teams and drivers capabilities to go beyond twenty races.
    That, to me atleast, is poppy cock! If this view is shared by the other drivers, and the teams, then this is indeed very interesting. They should be more concerned about what the fans want, and the sports future, than their own ends.
    The ‘off’ season for Formula One is five months. Five months is an awfully long time for the fans to go and plenty of time to add more races. Plenty of testing occurs in the summer months aswell as the winter ones, so I cannot see a problem running say 20 to 23 races a year!
    More back to back races would also help. Say pairing Australia and Malaysia or Japan and China within one week of one another. And cancelling the three week break in the summer, and adding a race inbetween.
    If certain drivers and personalities cannot handle that, then maybe they should retire now and makeway for some young buck who can!!

  11. How do the Sponsors feel about this slap in the face to North America? First Indy, now Montreal. As an avid North American fan who has attended both races, I am appalled at the snub to this market. Honda, Toyota, BMW and Mercedes will be hurt in their sales and support. If expenses were an issue, they should have ADDED America and not DROPPED Canada. This will affect my next auto purchase!

  12. A few things about this development strike me as particularly odd:

    1. There was no sign the Canadian Grand Prix’s position on the calendar was under threat when Bernie Ecclestone first proposed the 2009 calendar. No asterisk saying ‘subject to approval’, nothing.

    2. The FIA has not given any indication why the race has been dropped.

    3. The teams have been pushing for the United States Grand Prix to come back precisely because they want more exposure for F1 in North America.

    Which leads me to wonder: is this Ecclestone’s doing, or Mosley’s, or both?

    Some have pointed out that the Canadian Automobile Association signed the letter urging Mosley to resign over ‘spankgate’. Is Mosley pursuing a vendetta against them? At the same WMSC meeting the FIA annoucned it was investigating both the German motor clubs, one of which (the ADAC) also signed the letter. Who’s leading the investigation? Mosley’s close ally Alan Donnelly.

    (Incidentally, the other motor clubs that signed the letter which belong to nations which hold F1 races are JAF (Japan), CCB (Brazil), MAK (Hungary), RACC and RACE (Spain), TCB (Belgium), AAS (Singapore), FFA and FFSA (France).)

    A lot of people are criticising Ecclestone for this development. I want to know for sure he did it, and what his explanation for it is, before reaching that conclusion.

  13. I really think the manufacturers are gonna be pretty livid over this. Racing in Canada was probably the only consolation for BMW, Toyota, Ferrari, Honda, etc., after the US GP was dropped.

  14. Keith, good point. I really think Ecclestone stinks but Mosley’s stink is the most putrid in F1. He is a canker in the sport and while his vile presence is in it, F1 is doomed. I don’t think there has ever been such a malevolent presence in a sport as Mosley’s.

  15. – Wesley, as you may imagine, I fully share your anger and displeasure at this development and the others that have seen Formula 1 move away from our shores. While we all have a right to be angry, I would say to every fan in North America that the best way to keep the fire going is to keep our strong interest in the sport- otherwise, It’s just going to prove the critcs right when they say that we don’t appreciate F1.

    – Keith, I agree with everything you have written in #72. I’ve always thought that Bernie has the final say on what races stay or go, so I lumped him in there by force of habit- especially when the slot for the Canadian GP was replaced with Turkey, where Bernie has some ownership in the venue I believe. In terms of the teams, sponsors, and manufacturers wanting more of North America, I agree completely- I took the meeting at Spa as a very positive development, and would never guess that something like this would happen.

    – Uppilli, I had also considered going to Montreal this coming season, but was waiting on hearing some firm word about the U.S. in either 2009 or 2010 before doing anything, so perhaps I’ve got some of the blame to share on this one!

    Seriously, the loss of both Canada and Indianapolis dose rob fans in both countries of the chance to see a GP not only in their own country, but also in a neighboring nation. In the world that Bernie and Max live in everyone flies around the world in first class, but out here in the real world many of us can’t easily punch out the funds for a trip overseas to catch some of the F1 action, so we’re all getting cheated on this one.

  16. I agree with george k. This is the bill of Max Mosley with interest rates included for calling for his resignation. But I beleive it will be back.

  17. Why does F1 make it so hard to be a fan of F1 in North America! We just fought for our race two years ago.

  18. Looking at it from another angle, and one that has not been mentioned is could the Montreal Grand Prix have been withdrawn by the organisers?

    Considering that Normand Legault (promoter) had a contract secured until 2011 it seems a bit weird for it to be called off, surely he could sue the FIA/FOM/CVC for breaching a contract? Unless of course its on the grounds of track safety but then surely 1 year is enough to repair the track?

    According to the National Post Normand Legault will be making a statement later today.

  19. I wonder if the track has been removed due to tarmac repairs as keith speculated here:

    I’m also wondering if Bernie will tinker with one of the 3 week gaps if there is some kind of deadline for the repair work to be done thereby a late inclusion into the calender, might be wishful thinking on my part :(

  20. Rabi, I for sure do not have all the details but from the reports I read, the promoters and circuit staff at CGV had no idea that their race was being dropped before they heard about it through the same media channels you and I use. As such, I think we can rule out any chance that they pulled the plug on their own race- if they did, then this is one heck of a cover job!

    On the race surface, clearly there were some issues this year with it breaking up- here in the Northeast U.S. the asphalt surfaces suffer greatly from the winter cold and I would imagine it would be much worse up north in Montreal. However I would be suprised if that was the reason for today’s developments, as Bernie and Max have had plenty of time to pepper the promoters with their usual threats and barbs since the GP was held in June.

    We will see what emerges about this issue in the days and weeks ahead, and I’m sure we’ll all be watching our respective nation’s TV coverage of the entire GP weeeknd in Japan- let’s see if Peter Windsor presses Bernie on this as well as he did on the 2010 USGP rumours a few weeks back. Also, let’s see what comes out from the team bosses and directors, particurally Honda’s Nick Fry. who has been an adament defender of the North American market for some time now.

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