FOTA’s rumoured ‘new F1’ calendar for 2010 revives USA and Canadian rounds

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Adelaide in Australia is one of the track FOTA want to bring back
Adelaide in Australia is one of the track FOTA want to bring back

The Guardian claims to have details of the Formula One Teams’ Associations’ planned calendar for its rival F1 series in 2010.

As well as bringing back the United States and Canadian Grand Prix, it suggests race are planned in Argentina, Finland and Mexico. Plus, many of F1’s most popular venues – with two unfortunate exceptions – are to be retained.

3 March – Buenos Aires, Argentina (last F1 race: 1998)
21 March – Mexico City, Mexico (last F1 race: 1992)
11 April – Jerez, Spain (last F1 race: 1997)
25 April – Portimao, Portugal
2 May – Imola, Italy (last F1 race: 2006)
23 May – Monte Carlo, Monaco
6 June – Montreal, Canada (last F1 race: 2008)
13 June – Indianapolis, United States (last F1 race: 2007)
1 July – Silverstone, United Kingdom
25 July – Magny-Cours, France (last F1 race: 2008)
15 August – Laustizring, Germany
29 August – Helsinki, Finland
12 September – Monza, Italy
26 September – Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
10 October – Marina Bay, Singapore
24 October – Suzuka, Japan
8 November – Adelaide (last F1 race: 1995) or Surfers’ Paradise, Australia

There are many interesting points to note on this highly speculative list.

Good riddance

First, many F1 fans will welcome the rejection of many unloved venues penned by Hermann Tilke: Bahrain, Fuji, Shanghai and Sepang are all missing, So too is his rather better Istanbul circuit, with its excellent turn eight bend.

Several former F1 venues are revived including some real gems: the tough, bumpy, rapid Mexico City track, and the classic season finale on the Adelaide street circuit (though Surfers’ Paradise, formerly an Indy Car track, would be almost as good). However the same cannot be said of Jerez which, despite holding two memorable races in 1986 and 1997, is much too small for F1. The Motorland Aragon circuit (which, ironically, was designed by Hermann Tilke) would be a much better venue for the Spanish Grand Prix.

No Brazil – or Belgium

The cherished venues of Monaco, Silverstone, Suzuka and Monza all remain. The only ‘big names’ missing from the list are the sublime Spa-Francorchamps, which is believed to have a contract with Bernie Ecclestone until at least 2012, and Interlagos in Brazil (likewise until 2015).

The lack of any Brazilian round is a particular disappointment – it has been on the F1 calendar without fail since 1973, and Brazil has produced many championship and race-winning drivers. The absence of these two races, while San Marino returns as a second Italian round, is the least appealing aspect of this calendar for me.

The North American rounds return at their previous venues – the Canadian Grand Prix at Montreal and the United States round at Indianapolis (presumably the road course which has now been re-configured for Moto GP bikes and is, it must be said, even less satisfactory than its previous configuration).

New venues

The Portuguese Grand Prix, last raced in 1996, returns but at the new Algarve International Circuit in Portiamo which is a splendid-looking facility and was warmly received by the F1 teams and drivers when they tested on it last winter.

The prospect of a Finnish Grand Prix at Helsinki is fascinating and long overdue. A return to Argentina, even at the slow, cramped version of the Buenos Aires track last used in 1998, would be a welcome re-acquaintance with F1’s history. The new Potrero de los Funes circuit in San Luis would be a truly inspiring venue for this race, however.

The relocation of the German Grand Prix to the Laustizring is curious. Unless their intention is to use the oval circuit – which would be enormously exciting – the prospect of a race on the dreary road course within its bounds isn’t one I’d relish.

That aside I have only one objection to this speculative calendar – I want a single, unified Formula 1 to race on it, not some weakened manufacturer-run series under a different name, and not something that calls itself Formula 1 which has driven all the biggest and best teams away.

What do you think of the rumoured calendar? Is it credible? Which races would you drop – and which would you like to add?

Read more

NB. I haven’t been able to find a link from the article where I saw the calendar online – it’s on the front of the sports supplement in today’s Guardian.

Update: Thanks to Marilia for posting this link to the epaper version of the Guardian in the comments, where you can find the page.

215 comments on “FOTA’s rumoured ‘new F1’ calendar for 2010 revives USA and Canadian rounds”

  1. Mussolini's pet cat
    22nd June 2009, 21:44

    And who’s going to televise it?? Heard that Sky might….bad times……

    1. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! NOT SKY!! Bring back ITV, James Allen, anyone! just not sky!!

      1. If Sky pick up the rights, then illegal downloading it is for me.

      2. I’d far rather have Sky than ITV. Their A1GP coverage is very good and ad-free.

        1. But you have to pay for it. I’d rather have a few ads than have to pay £40 a month for 6 hours of TV.

        2. Fair enough, but I watch other stuff on Sky (A1GP, Indy Car) and so does my partner, so it works for us.

          If there was a choice between watching F1 live with ads, or paying a fee to watch F1 live without ads, I’d probably go for the latter, if it was a fair price (and decent commentary team etc…). I’d say around £10-15 per month – Sky with Sky Sports is £35.50.

          1. Unfortunately, that’s just too much for my current budget. I agree there is probably other stuff I would watch, like the other motorsport series. I’d have to research into what they show, but I already pay £140 a year to watch TV, even though only a small percentage of that (pretty much just the F1 and Top Gear (when it’s on)) is watching the BBC, which is what that £140 goes on, so forking up another £425 a year for what I see as a generally advert-ridden, sub-par television package is just not an option.

          2. As I have said before, if FOTA want their series to be successful I think they have to make sure it is live on free to air TV. If either FOTA or FIA F1 were not on terrestrial TV, I for one simply wouldn’t watch them.

            I couldn’t justify getting Sky just for F1 and the few other things I would want to watch, and besides I already spend too much time in front of the TV so I wouldn’t want the temptation of all those extra channels anyway.

            Bernie has said before that F1 has to be available on free to air TV because of the exposure, and as the FOTA teams and sponsors would want the maximum exposure I think they would probably take the same view.

          3. I just couldn’t justify getting Sky for F1, and certainly couldn’t justify watching more motorsport (it’s difficult enough with a small familty to watch just F1 and MotoGP) to justify the Sky monthly bill.

            If it’s not Free to Air TV (or Eurosport at worst) I won’t be watching it. Fortunately F1 is on terrestrial tele. I did not mind the adverts, they offered a suitable comfort break, and invariably I watch the race recorded (avoiding the result all day) so zoom past the ads anyway.

          4. Michael Roberts
            23rd June 2009, 13:42

            A good alternative would be Eurosport. They’ve got a decent size audience and thanks to Eurosport Player you can watch both their channels via the web for only £5.

      3. Sky nearly killed F1 last they had it. Bernie (thank god) look it away from them.

        1. I may be wrong Tiomkin, but when did sky have formula one?

          1. Michael Roberts
            23rd June 2009, 20:27

            SKY used to show F1 Digital on it’s own dedicated channel.

  2. Richard Evans
    22nd June 2009, 21:45

    29 August – Helsinki, Portugal

    Do you mean Finland??

    1. Fixed!

  3. Selfish unlikely choices:
    – If Italy gets a second round, then so should Britain, as reward for the number of fans prepared to actually go to the races.
    – Swap Monaco with Indy, keep May clear, declare the Indy 500 to have championship status, and have all the FOTA teams submit Indy entries.
    – Find space for Watkins Glen too.

    1. Richard Evans
      22nd June 2009, 22:00

      Imola is san marino though.

      1. It’s actually in Italy :P

    2. – Find space for Watkins Glen too.

      Yes, please!

      1. Laguna Seca Please.

        Ditch Imola for Laguna Seca.

        1. Laguna Seca…YES!!

          1. Long Beach, Laguna Seca, Sonoma, Watkins Glen, Road America, WAYYYYYY too many better tracks in the USA than the Indy road course.

    3. I believe that they should have 2 rounds in Britain, Italy and the US or maybe 3 in the US(Watkins Glen, Road America, and Lagune seca) There are some others I would like to see there also such as Zandvoort and Kyalami, plus a Brazil entry. This would keep ther real fans interested. Also dont limit yourself to 17 races. go to 18 or 20.
      Split the procedes from the tickets with the track owners and dont charge them a fee to be on the schedule. Split the procedes with the TV and everyone will make money and no one will ever look back.

      1. If FOTA split ticket fees with TV and Circuits then how will they be able afford to run a series?
        Fom charge tv companies for the right to show F1 and charge circuits for the honour of staging races, and this money is used to pay the teams and Bernie’s and cvc’s pockets.

        So basically are you saying that ticket sales would be the only main income from the series?

        Well i am sure FOTA will be able to arrange things satisfactorily.

      2. “Split the procedes from the tickets with the track owners and dont charge them a fee to be on the schedule. Split the procedes with the TV and everyone will make money and no one will ever look back.”

        Brilliant ! That’s definitely the way to do it. Cheers Mate !

  4. Mussolini's pet cat
    22nd June 2009, 21:56

    Bathurst…ok prehaps not..

    1. James Brickles
      22nd June 2009, 23:21

      Now that would be amazing ;)

      1. OMG, that would be incredible
        but impossible….

    2. It won’t happen, but if it did… imagine how fast the cars would be going by the time they got to the braking zone for Chase? :D

  5. As long as Suzuka is on there its fine with me!

  6. Robert McKay
    22nd June 2009, 21:58

    It’s not bad, not bad at all.

    No Spa is bad, obviously, but seeing A1GP at Portimao makes me think that could be the new Spa. I really like Portimao.

    There’s enough familiar tracks in there to make it recognisable as F1, and some old favourites. Going back to Adelaide and Mexico would be nice. Lausitzring and Helsinki are wild cards, though, that’s very bizarre.

    It’s not an A1GP calendar, that’s for sure. It’s quite cool, in a funky mid-1990’s retro way.

    I’m surprised Singapore’s on it, though. Just assumed new F1 night race would be well under contractual lock and key.

    And ok, Buenos Aires and Jerez aren’t stunning but I’ll take them over Bahrain and Shanghai.

    1. Don’t forget that Spa can be on it from 2013. All is not lost, we just have to wait a few years :)

    2. Also Jerez ain’t great but it’s still much better than both Barcelona and Valencia.

  7. Monaco appears to be on F1’s traditional race weekend (which is always the same religious holiday weekend) which could prove interesting if the split does happen…

    Have to agree we’re long overdue a Finnish GP. Plus it might wake Kimi up ;)

    1. Monaco has already said that if F1 splits they are going (with Ferarri) with the FOTA side. F1 would be left trying to fill that hole with another race.

  8. I’d be happy with a calendar such as that. I have a few remarks:

    » Lausitzring? Why not the Nurburgring, since Hockenheim will host the 2010 German Grand Prix.
    » Helsinki? I would be very much surprised. I guess FOTA would sooner go to Qatar.
    » I was surprised to see Monza on the list, but it has no 2010 FOM contract yet. Great!
    » Abu Dhabi must be on Bernie’s roster for a number of years, but the Arabs might opt to pay FOM to jump ship to FOTA.
    » Same goes for Singapore.
    » Suzuka is on the 2010 FIA calendar and is rumoured to be for a number of years, yet; I’d expect Toyota-owned Fuji to be on FOTA’s list, though.
    » Surfers Paradise may not be suitable at all for modern F1 cars. Adelaide would be great, though.
    » I would bet on a FOTA race in China, it being the (2nd?) largest car market in the world.
    » Lastly I wouldn’t be surprised to see Mugello on the roster, since it’s owned by Ferrari.
    » As a stand-in for Spa, FOTA could visit Zandvoort, although the track isn’t quite as suitable for F1 as the Dutch might like.

    1. On 2nd thought, Regarding Lausitz and Indy: perhaps FOTA are contemplating running on ovals, too. :-)

      1. That would be cool – but I doubt it would happen, at least in the short-to-medium term. They’d have to beef up the impact protection on the cars, surely?

        1. They’d have to have completely different cars for ovals.
          Indycars have the suspension on one side and bigger tyres on that side to aide the cars turning, plus other technical stuff i am not familiar with.

        2. 1994fanatic
          23rd June 2009, 19:11

          Please no oval races, leave that crap to american racing. That’s why I watch F1, no ovalage. It gets boring after lap 5 and racing is based off of the safety car.

      2. I’m thinking that too. Two oval-ready circuits in the calendar might mean that at least part of the ovals would be used.

        Given the last-minute nature of this arrangement, though, I’d guess the oval races won’t happen for next year. But didn’t F1 have a history of racing in part-ovals before? Monza, and of course Indy.

        1. There’s actually 3 oval ready circuits of that calender, Mexico City has a mile oval built in aswell.

          The there’s Monza aswell, imagine a race on the oval there, spectacular!

    2. Nurbring might not held next year race, but it’s still under contract to Bernie.

      V8 Supercars own Adelaide and I don’t think they really want to share it with F1. So it’s easier to bought the A1GP contract at Surfer’s.

      1. I have to agree with Filipe. I cannot see V8 Supercars moving over to share with F1 or an F1 spin off. V8 Supercars see themselves as a premier level of motor sport, they don’t do support slots.

        At Surfers Paradise the V8 Supercars have had dual billing with Indycars, and this year with the A1GP, in fact the V8 Supercar race is the final race of the weekend.

        The South Australian government probably has no real interest in attracting an F1 spin off to Adelaide, as the V8 Supercar event is a sellout anyway, and I would doubt they would want the disruption of having to build the circuit twice a year.

        The Queensland Government probably also has no real interest in attracting the F1 to Surfer’s Paradise either, as most people go to see the Ford versus Holden “battle” and boobs. Mostly drunk bogans. I went last year with some friends, two of us went to see the Indycars, and the support races, and the other two only cared about the V8 Supercars and boobs.

    3. the owners of the Abu Dhabi circuit and that whole area are heavy investors in Ferrari (thats why its there).

  9. American fans thank you FOTA! Give us back some real racing so we aren’t forced to watch oval boringness!

    See you Max and Bernie!!! Good riddance you miserable old bags!

  10. Robert McKay
    22nd June 2009, 22:07

    Also, if tracks like Monza, Monaco and Singapore do “defect”, then the “proper” F1 series calendar suddenly has some BIG holes in it.

    Already you can see how two separate series are good in the sense that we get extra tracks, but may well slit each others throats for them…

    1. Also, if tracks like Monza, Monaco and Singapore do “defect”, then the “proper” F1 series calendar suddenly has some BIG holes in it.

      Well, that assumes the two are mutually exclusive – they needn’t be. The days of FIA/FOM preventing circuits from holding rival series’ events ended with the EU row in the early 2000s – without which Montreal couldn’t have held CART races nor Sepang and Shanghai A1 Grand Prix rounds.

  11. In regards to TV rights, hopefully they’ll keep the Internet video rights to themselves, so FOTA can do their own live Internet broadcasts for everywhere that doesn’t have any TV broadcasts.

    It’s not really a world championship if everyone in the world can’t watch it.

    1. Hear, hear.

    2. It’d be interesting to see how they’d arrange this with the national broadcasters — it’d be nice if you can get this broadcast everywhere, and for every viewer whose IP address is from a country with a broadcaster, they get reimbursed for lost TV revenues.

      Otherwise, it might be hard to get traditional broadcasters to sign on.

  12. Marilia Compagnoni Martins
    22nd June 2009, 22:17

    hello from Brazil

    I’m a little bit sad with your twitte about FOTA, the link to the Guardian is here, I hope FOTA finds a way to put Brazil in the calendar.

    1. Thanks for that Marilia – hadn’t seen that epaper thing before.

      1. Marilia Compagnoni Martins
        23rd June 2009, 7:07

        you are wellcome Keith.

        here in Brazil we have an awesome F1 site and it’s owner, Mr Flavio Gomes has a blog where a follower wrote that Argentina will take place on Wednesday, Silverstone on Thursday, and Australia on Monday.

        Haven’t noticed that before…

      2. What about Jacerapagua in Rio..?

        1. I think FOTA have enough to be getting on with putting together a calendar and a series that works, without being expected to race on a circuit that’s being demolished.

        2. Marilia Compagnoni Martins
          23rd June 2009, 16:31

          Politicians ruined Jacarepagua

          they modified it because they wanted some Pan American games taking place there, and now they want to change what was left.

  13. WOW what a calender. No silly tracks built for architecture and so called “racing” with long straight after hairpin after long straight etc.

  14. 3 March – Buenos Aires, Argentina

    No!!! Why would you wanna begin the series with the most boring track ever?? Terrible choice.
    The first race will be for the fans to decide if they like the new series and are interested to follow it to the next race.

    15 August – Laustizring, Germany

    If only it was the oval track *sigh*

  15. I don’t know why they’re going back to Indy. The road course is pathetic. Why not pick Watkins Glen or something like that? Hell, why not Laguna Seca? I was also hoping they’d hold a race in Toronto :(. Oh well…

    Magny Cours?? I thought the drivers hated that place. They should go try Le Mans instead. And they should use the old Hockenheim for Germany if possible.

    1. The old Hockenheimring sadly no longer exists. It was demolished after the new bit was built to give something back to the forest of which a large portion was destroyed.

    2. They should go try Le Mans instead.

      YES, the full 8 miles or whatever it is!

      Coola Boola!

      1. never. there is only one race at le mans, and it is le mans.

        1. Well, MotoGP races there as well……

          1. MotoGP is held on the shortened version of the track.

    3. Laguna Seca is one of the best circuits technically in America, but it’s too small for Formula One cars. They would lap around 1:05:xxx, which is too low for a circuit. And the fact that it lies in a remote location surely doesn’t help as well. If they can do an exception for this circuit, like they do for Monaco, it would be great.

      How about a race in Macau in China, instead of in Shanghai? Both circuits are different and both are good. Macau is unique due to it’s elevation change and long straight.

      1. But,the sight of F1 cars screaming through the corkscrew would make up for the length of the course!

  16. A Finnish Grand Prix at last, to replace that horrid Hunga-bore-ring. Jerez instead of Barcelona, Excellent excellent.

    Surfers Paradise, now I’d love to see an F1 car have a go at that place.

    Shame the Argentina round isn’t at that beautiful track round the lake in the mountains, because we all know that the Buenos Aires track is like.

    Shame about Spa, and Interlagos, but like the article says, there’s a long time until 2010.

    No Sebring or Laguna Seca though :(

    1. F1 car wouldn’t survive Sebring, and prolly would have a problem with the Corkscrew.

      Road America or Road Atlanta would be good choices though

      1. Well having seen the video of the F1 Toyota navigate the Corkscrew, I’d beg to differ, but having F1 at Laguna Seca is really just dreaming.

        I’m guessing Sebring is a little too bumpy.

        I don’t see how Jerez is too short though, I mean, I remember the races there being alright, I guess the only way to find out is to have a modern F1-esque race there and see how it goes.

  17. Someone above suggested incorporating the Indy 500 as a points paying race and leaving the month of May to that race. A great idea, but only if there is another race at a place like Road America. The Glen would be good as well, but a bit short even on the extended course. And I’d get to see TWO races (Montreal and the Glen).

    But all of this is nothing more than FOTA tossing logs on the fire of Max’s funeral pyre for this Wednesday’s WMSC meeting. The only way the FIA tosses Max out on his bum is if the FIA delegates really and truly believe these guys will carry out their threat. Speculating on schedules and venues just makes it more real.

  18. Sounds more like a fantasy series tbh … I can see a number of tracks that would presumably have contracts with FOM for F1 races. Doubt they could also host FOTA unless F1(the FIA version) implodes.

    1. I can see a number of tracks that would presumably have contracts with FOM for F1 races.

      Well, bear with me here, the following is part assumption and part guesswork:

      Abu Dhabi is new on the F1 calendar this year. Major contracts often begin with probationary periods with get-out clauses on either side – they don’t just launch into a multi-year deal, they put down an arrangement for the first year with options on extensions. So perhaps Abu Dhabi could get out that way.

      We could extend that logic to Singapore, particularly as it is making some changes to its layout this year, and Suzuka, returning this year after a two-year absence.

      In Italy, F1 broadcaster RAI has a get-out clause whereby if Ferrari aren’t competing their contract to broadcast F1 is void. It wouldn’t surprise me if Monza had a similar arrangement – what’s the point in having an Italian Grand Prix without Ferrari?

      Those are the only F1 tracks on the calendar this year that appear on FOTA’s schedule – apart from Silverstone, which we all know is at the end of its contract.

      Monza aside, all the F1 circuits which have said they have contracts for 2010 are not on this list: Bahrain, Catalunya, Hungaroring, Interlagos, Istanbul, Melbourne, Sepang, Donington Park, Spa-Francorchamps and Valencia, plus the proposed new race in South Korea.

      So it’s not an unrealistic list. But that doesn’t mean I don’t think it releasing it is a political move…

      1. I dont think these tracks have exclusivity clauses, as this would be economical suicide to the track not only that the FIA are carrying on about competition laws, it could be argued in breach of this law.
        I think this has much to do with the fact, the new FOTA series does not want to stand on anybody’s toes. They cannot negotiate with existing contracted tracks whilst still competing in F1 as I would have no doubt this would be a breach of some laws. However if the tracks approached them then this would be totally legal.
        Furthermore I dont think we will have 2 racing series next year. I think FOTA will be the premier championship. It is estimated 2.2 billion dollars of investment will follow FOTA instead of staying with f1. I cannot see how F1 will survive. I think Bernie knows this and he will follow the teams because he has contracts based on participation of the manufactures teams and current private teams. One team leaving would not muddy the waters, 8 teams leaving is a different story. The FOTA series will take 75% of f1 worth instantly.

        1. even if Bernie does realize that FOTA have won, I can’t see any reason why they would let him in. Bernie doesn’t bring enough to the table to get 50% of revenue.

          Bernie and FOM are finished either way, as is Max.

      2. Abu Dhabi most definitely have a ‘Ferrari’ get out clause… They’re building a massive Ferrari theme park adjacent to the circuit.

      3. its actually the opposite – they have multi-year lock-in contracts with Bernie, otherwise they wouldn’t invest the hundreds of millions into building a circuit without a 5+ year guarantee.

        as I said above, the Abu Dhabi investment group that is building the new circuit there is also a very heavy investor in Ferrari, so there is no doubt that they would pay their way out of their FOM contract to host a FOTA race.

        1. the Abu Dhabi investment group that is building the new circuit there is also a very heavy investor in Ferrari, so there is no doubt that they would pay their way out of their FOM contract to host a FOTA race.

          Good point.

        2. The two might not be exclusive — it could be that Bernie cannot opt-out of the Abu Dhabi race, but the track owners can (if Ferrari is not racing, for instance).

      4. OK just had this from the Singapore press office:

        The official line is that the 2008 FORMULA 1(TM) SingTel Singapore Grand Prix was the first in a five-year contract with FoM.

    2. HounslowBusGarage
      22nd June 2009, 23:25

      Jaz, I’m not sure about this idea of FOM having exclusive contracts wih the tracks. If you look at A1GP, who I would have though of being one of FOM’s enemies, they run at Sepang – a track that FOM uses. Also Superleague Formula (that’s not an FIA series, is it?) race at Monza.

  19. Can anyone give details of the Helsinki race? Is that going to be a street circuit or is there a road facility there?

    I had a wild fantasy about it being an ice race – obviously never going to happen (plus wrong time of year) but we can dream!

    1. About 10 years ago there were a couple of F3000 (and possibly DTM) races held on a street track in Helsinki. You can probably find clips of the races online.

  20. There are plenty of road courses in America better than Indy. C’mon FOTA, you can do better than that. Road America, Road Atlanta, Laguna Seca, Sebring, Long Beach, and Mid-Ohio come to mind immediately. You have to remember Watkins Glen was changed because it couldn’t handle the demands of F1 cars anymore, and that was decades ago. So I don’t see a return there without major modifications.

    1. In general, no rovals. They’re NEVER entertaining.

      1. I thought the one at Daytona was quite decent, though that is probably just an exception.

    2. You have to remember Watkins Glen was changed because it couldn’t handle the demands of F1 cars anymore, and that was decades ago. So I don’t see a return there without major modifications.

      Sadly I don’t think Watkins Glen has any more run-off space than Road America, Road Atlanta or Laguna Seca. F1 at Long Beach again would be cool, though.

      1. Another option for US is Cleveland. It isn’t more unsafe than any street track, but it actually has good racing. It always drew a great crowd in Cart and was left out after the merger and IRL for some reason refuses to go back there.

      2. You’re probably right about laguna seca, but after a quick looksie on google maps, the Glen has very, very little room for improvement. It’s surrounded by public road. Road America, however has lots of room everywhere inside and outside of itself. Not only that, but I think the only corner that would need substantial runoff addition is the kink. Same goes for Road Atlanta, only turn 12 would need serious runoff space. However, Road Atlanta has two pit roads because it’s start/finish straight is only about 1500ft, which really won’t do for quick improvements. Road America’s pit straight is almost 3 times longer though, and is probably a better circuit anyway. Lastly, no matter what, both of those are safer than 90% of street circuits. With a little well deserved development, I think Road America could easily host a future Grand Prix.

        However, even if those circuits are deemed unsafe for use, Mid-Ohio and (the even better) Sebring for use. Just imagine an F1 car bouncing up and down Sunset Bend (the long last one.) Also, I’m a bit biased against Long Beach because there’s no way I’ll ever be able to get there for a long while

        1. One of the reasons Road America is out of IRL calendar is that they can’t pay IRL fee, how would they pay F1’s?

          1. No, they’re out because they were really just snubbed from the schedule once the merger happened, and they were one of the many tracks dropped. Also, isn’t circuits paying for a race one of the things FOTA wanted to change? It’s my understanding FOTA wanted to pay the circuit, then keep the ticket sales.

  21. I’m impressed with the calendar. If they can get them organised for the new series i’ll be happy.
    Yes there are a few tracks missing, and one or 2 that shouldn’t be on the list (imola jerez) i agree with Keith Motorland aragon for spain and maybe try for another track in brazil, dunno which one though.
    However it is early days. let’s just get the series up and running succesfully, then the calendar can be modified, with those tracks still attached to Bernie possibly joining.

    I’ll be interested to see a full and complete confirmed calendar in a few weeks

    1. I would also say that the biggest problem i would have with any FOTA breakaway series is their idea of shorter races.
      I am sooooo against this it is unreal even a 10% reduction would be too much. Some of the races in F1 are to short as it is. Bigger fuel tanks are not a problem, how did they run before refuelling? and they could try for a more economic fuel to last longer.

      Now i have been watching some races from the 80’s and they have been far more enjoyable than any this year. It showed that some used their tyres harder than others so they had to take more pit stops.

      Please FOTA do not ruin racing by making mickey mouse racing with short races.

  22. I liked the Argentine track that you wrote an article on better than the look of Algarve.

    The cars shouldn’t go to Indy, unless it’s the oval (go to Laguna Seca.)

    Sucks to have no Spa.

    Adelaide returning at the end is brilliant, though, and Surfers Paradise is another fast street circuit.

    The calendar looks like on old 1980’s calendar to me :)

  23. Being an Aussie I watch both the Adelaide touring car race and the Sufers Indy race, and the Surfers track is rubbish – no overtaking opportunities really. At least with Adelaide you have a few and the ridiculously fast turn 8 – the touring car track cuts out a bit of the old F1 circuit and has this flat out kink in the middle of the back straight now. Not sure if it would pass F1 safety or not but damn does it make for good on board tv!

    The only other track that would be good in Australia – Bathurst aside, but that track (having raced there myself, in a soapbox mind you…) is stupidly narrow with zero run off over the top of the mountain – would be Phillip Island, where they race the MotoGP round for oz. It’s a similar style of circuit to the old A1 Ring I guess, but the bikes are great there. It’s an option anyway.

    I reckon the track list looks awesome, all we need is Spa and Interlagos and you would have an ultimate racing list. Go FOTA!!!

    1. i was thinking phillip island too, it would be amazing to see a f1 car(fota car?) pulling 320kph down the main straight into the 1st corner, also plenty of overtaking spots to, would they make it down lukey hights though? probably just launch straight over!!!

  24. What about Anderstop in Sweden? It seems like a decent track too…

  25. I like:
    Portimao: Wohooo!

    I don’t like:
    Indianapolis: Surely they would be better off with a street race in the US, preferable in California?
    Magny Cours: Boring track. I would rather see F1 cars at Le Mans.
    Lausitzring: Boring track. Sachsenring is a cool track but maybe too narrow?
    Helsinki: Forget about F1 or MotoGP races in Scandinavia. It’s just too far away from populated areas. The economy will not work.
    Imola: Yes, it’s classic. But good races? Naw…

    Why not try to add (South) Africa and become truly global?
    I think they have to look into new markets like China, Korea, India and Russia.
    Alternating calendars to allow more venues? Race on 9 tracks every year and alternate the other 9 on a two year basis.

    1. Why not try to add (South) Africa and become truly global?

      Good point – if they can go to Mexico City why not Kyalami?

    2. If they are going to have a street race in USA then i suggest Phoenix. Yes i know i’m a broken record just cos i live in Phoenix. I agree about South Africa.

  26. oh god, not Magny-bore again. Imola was also often procesional and Indianapolis mickey-mouse course was just plain boring… Nice to see Portimao included, some testing footage I saw from it was great. I have no idea what the German course looks like and Finnish GP is also purely speculational… Is there anything offical behind it or just someones speculation what the calendar could look like?

  27. Mexico City would be a real backwards step: the track looked terrible the last time A1GP raced there – extremely poor surface, and the Peralta has been ruined by all manner of chicanes etc. I’d love to see Potrero de los Funes, but could live with Buenos Aires, just.

    I think we’d strangely miss Bahrain, Malaysia and/or Shanghai, along with a season-opener at Melbourne… even if the locals wouldn’t. Adelaide could work, but even the full circuit (not the V8 Supercar version) would surely be too short, and the hairpin at the end of the straight too dangerous, for modern “F1”.

    Paul Ricard rather than Magny Cours (yes I know Bernie owns the former); Hockenheim rather than Lausitzring; Laguna Seca (or Road America) rather than Indy!

    1. By the way, we all know this is just fantasy, albeit plausible fantasy, which is never going to happen, don’t we?…

    2. About Melbourne, i think that many of us who live here would miss it.

      The biggest problem with the GP is that we pay approx AUD$42m each year to host the race and it has Bernie’s 10% per year kicker. Many people feel that that much money would be better off spent elsewhere like schools or hospitals. If the cost was more like 20-25m per year, there would be far less resistance, and probably more people attending if the admission prices went down accordingly.

      And personally, I would not like to see an F1 race at Surfer’s as there are barely any overtaking opportunities. It’s basically the first car through the first chicane is the car that wins

      1. Well if Melbourne is not an option, Adelaide out of the running, and Surfer’s Paradise is a non runner.

        Then it has to be BATHURST.

        Unless there is another circuit in australia suitable.

        1. Didn’t Eastern Creek recently say they would be willing to perform the neccessary upgrades to become an F1 quality track, possibly with floodlighting, in order to steal the race away from Melbourne. maybe that would be another possibility. Not until a 2011 season though.

  28. No Brazil? No Japan? No SPA? C’mon guys.

    1. Japan is on there. Penultimate round at Suzuka.

  29. Jerez is a good track, but to be honest, I don’t see it providing exciting races. And it’s a bit short.

    1. Bartholomew
      23rd June 2009, 0:28

      Jerez is not a suitable track. They have to do something in Spain however …. or there will be an uprising.
      Is the Aragon track ready ?

  30. I can tell 100 % sure that tere will not be race in Helsinki, Finland.

    The Quardian really have picked up that list from their own hat lol.

    I am not even sure if Finland want risk their Rally world chanpion ship by going against Mosley…but that is just my thought.

    But what is sure is that Finland do not have place for F1. They have talked about it years but still its not in palce so I think its better to wait till FOTa tells what tracks they will use.

    There are so many rumors around and i am supprise that newspapers write about all that like fact.

  31. my worthless suggestions for this hypothetical list notwithstanding, i’ll take jump on board with fota the minute this becomes official.

    as others have said, this is a great chance to rotate through lots of good (or great) tracks. i’d still like to see one race per country, but lacking spa and a couple others, some short-term padding doesn’t hurt. goodbye to china, hungary, turkey and a second race in malaysia. abu dhabi remains because of the heavy investment from that country.

    indy / leguna seca / road america
    suzuka / fuji
    melbourne / surfer’s paradise / adelaide
    monza / imola / rome
    nuburgring / hockenheim / wherever

    yes, i like where this is going….

  32. Bartholomew
    23rd June 2009, 0:30

    How about Philips Island in Australia ? at least for bikes it is superb

  33. well, im not sure about Argentina, the track was so bumpy that cause problems to drivers view (jumping eyes)

  34. People remember this Guardian article is probably just speculating on a possible calendar.

    Once the real calendar is released in a few weeks i’m sure some of us will be happy, some of us downhearted and some really p***ed off.

    We can all come up with our ideal calendar, but For me, i’ll be happy with a decent sized calendar with decent length of races and all the best teams and drivers. In time FOTA will get the series running the way we might want it with as many circuits most of us like as they can organise. Nobody can expect them to get it perfect straight away.

    1. thats true scunnyman, but can be just another point to pressure Max Mosley to find a solution (get out from the FIA)

      1. It could also do the opposite alejob.

        The guardian article may, and this is a long shot i know, have released this information which they think the fans will not be happy about, and therefore be unhappy with FOTA, hence might start to have simpathy with FIA.
        How wrong they would be if this was the case. We fans may be unhappy with certain aspects of the calendar, but for the most part we will still support FOTA.

        1. Good point scunnyman, at this point we do not know who is doing what to push to their favor.
          From my point of view, i dont think that the FOTA will separate from F1, they are like a undivorcial marriage… and Mosley the pain in the *&^%%#$ mother in law.

  35. I like that several of the weak tracks (Sepang, Fuji, Valencia) or those with very poor attendance (Turkey, Bahrein) are dropped. I really like the re-inclusion of Montreal and Indy. I don’t like the non-inclusion of Spa and Interlagos. Overall this is a good calendar, consider the circumstances. And I could care less about what the FIA does. The FOTA F1 championship will be **the** F1 championship. I would rather see Ferrari racing McLaren, Renault, Toyota and BMW than Lola racing USF1 … any day.

    1. Hopefully USF1 will be racing with the big teams, breakaway or no breakaway…..

  36. chaostheory
    23rd June 2009, 0:52

    I wouldnt mind Long Beach instead of Indianapolis

  37. Ferrari 1607
    23rd June 2009, 1:00

    THANK YOU FOTA!!!!!!!!!!!
    WE accually have not 1 but 3 proposed venues in North America!!!!

    Not indy/ go to Languna Seca

    heres an onboard lap of Laguna Seca in a Toyota F1 car from 2006

  38. YaYa Baby, now we’re talking! F1 FOTA back in the USSA!
    I can wait until 2012 for Spa. F1 back in the USSCanada Too! This is gonna be great! I can wait for 2015 for Interlagos too. How about Jacaparagua or whatever the other Brazilian track is called?
    Better yet, in USA how about some upgrades and get them running at Road America. Our version of the Ostereichring. Isn’t there a better Spanish track available besides Jerez? (That doesn’t belong to Bernie?)

    1. Jacaparagua has been closed for some time and is being demolished in plans to promote Rio’s bid for the Olympics.

      1. Jacarapagua was almost destroyed a couple of years ago and what is left of the track is barely used by the local brazilian series.

        The unfortunate truth is that there’s no F1 ready track in Brazil except from Interlagos. The only track up t6o safety standards would be Curitiba where the first WTCC round is ( It’s big short comming is that it’s too short (3.2km). The only other potential option I can think of is Brasilia (, that happens to be a pretty good track, but it’s completely out of current F1 standards (it’s a 70’s track that barely get any updates since then). I mention it for two reasons:
        1 – After IRL decide to hold a race here, the local government put the track as an option and seems willing to update it for them. Of course, it would need much larger updates for F1 than for IRL, but it would also bring much more money to the city.
        2 – The track is owned by the city, but its rights are leased to Nelson Piquet. So at least Briatore already has a strong relationship with the track owner (on the other hand Piquet might want to include a contract extension for Jnr in the deal).

        1. Marilia Compagnoni Martins
          23rd June 2009, 7:02


          I was reading Flavio Gomes’blog, and the follower Alemão de Santa Cruz do Sul wrote 3 possible tracks: Santa Cruz do Sul,Tarumã, and Guaporé. I don’t know any of them, do you? Also the show Limite from ESPN Brasil has been showing some nice tracks in our country. Again, I don’t know those tracks, I don’t know if the cities can hold a GP, but remember: Silverstone is surrounded by farms.

          Interlagos is perfect for me cause I can stay at my brother’s house and see my family. But sometimes I wander about a nice GP in another track.

          1. Tarumã is great but to old and too short. Santa Cruz is to short and narrow. Guaporé is so out of date that even Stock Cars refuse to go back there.

  39. Being totally impartial, I’d love to see (FOTA) F1 (back?) in Argentina.
    Regarding the ‘Buenos Aires’-‘Potrero de los Funes’ choice: Buenos Aires would need to be completely rebuild, it’s impossible to run F1 cars there. But it has many possible layouts, and as they need to start almost from scratch they can choose whichever gives the best racing (the first turn, fast, long, with a slight banking, taking to the massive back straight would be a nice view…). Potrero de los Funes is an amazing place, but they will need some extra money to upgrade it to F1 level. Granted, it will be less money than what you need to update Buenos Aires, but Buenos Aires is close to a huge 13 million population area, while the whole Mendoza Province has a population of only 1.5 million. Do the math ;-)

  40. I like to have FOTA add Spa & San Paulo on their list.

    How about the classic Nurburgring track for a challenge? :)

  41. Prisoner Monkeys
    23rd June 2009, 1:10

    Sorry, but I’m not believing it. This list emerged less than forty-eight hours after FOTA annouced their breakaway, and they’ve stated that they’re not going to do any work on anything until after the WMSC meeting on Wednesday. The idea that they could already have a provisional calendar drawn up is ridiculous, especially since they were still willing to negotiate with the FIA the day before the split.

    And while the Tilke-dromes are off the calendar, they’ve been replaced by equally-bland cicuits: Buenos Aries, Magny-Cours or inappropriate ones like Surfers Paradise. Meanwhile, I KNOW Adelaide doesn’t want a return of Formula One. They’re happy with the Adelaide circuit being the season-opener for the V8 Supercars, and don’t much want to have to shut the city down twice.

    I suspect this calendar is little more than someone trying to get readers/listeners/viewers by presenting information that no-one else has.

    1. I agree with that- it’s something anyone could have drawn up really. Perhaps FOTA is negotiating with some of those places, but I doubt this is the arrangement.

    2. I see your point, but i dont think FOTA would have made a threat without some research in advance. Then again who knows. The difference with a FOTA race in comparison to an F1 race will be the track will make a profit. FOTA wont demand 42million like they demand for the Mebourne GP. The fee would be 15 to 20 million. At this price the track makes money. FOTA make money and the prospect of hosting a race become very attractive.

    3. Robert McKay
      23rd June 2009, 8:53

      It depends who you listen to. Some of FOTA’s more prominent members like to keep telling us that they’re doing lots of work behind the scenes on the breakaway championship.

    23rd June 2009, 1:34

    if you are planning to have a race in the USA that will stay, and become a destination for the sport, you only have 2 real choices: Laguna Seca or Long Beach. These are the places that will make F1 in the USA

  43. Very interesting development. As for my thoughts…

    – Any calendar that features a return to the United States, as well as Montreal, gets an A-plus in my book! Even if it’s at Indy, one race on that circuit is better than none at all.
    – With that said, one of the things that makes me think twice about this info is that the car companies (who would obviously be running FOTA) aren’t very keen on Indianapolis, as they prefer a localtion closer to major consumer bases. Indy is easy in terms of logistics, but I would expect them to look elsewhere if possible.
    – Long Beach would be GREAT for a FOTA series to run at, but IndyCar already races there (thanks Bernie!) and you’d have the same issue that someone raised earlier with Adelaide shutting down twice for two events.
    – I’d love Watkins Glen, but it’s owned by the France Family (who own NASCAR) and I doubt they would want a seires they percieve as a rival racing there, even if they were willing to make upgrades.
    – In a country with as much racing herritage and interest as Brazil, isn’t there more than one F1-spec circuit?
    – The idea of a race in Finland is quite interesting…..
    – Three cheers for Portimao, although I can’t understand why they want Jerez over Motorland Aragon.

    Again, not a bad deal, but I doubt it’s even a rough draft of the real calendar, if they are putting that together.

    1. Indy is the only US track up to standards. That’s a good reason to race there. That said, I suspect FOTA knew they might need to lax a little bit on some of the current standards if they want a 17-race calendar.

      I get the feeling that what was leaked was a calendar that had a list of races, but but the actual tracks are guesses by the paper. A few of the tracks choices are weird San Luis makes more sense than Buenos Aires, the Toyota-owned Fuji unfortunely makes more sense than the Honda-owned Suzuka and Adelaide makes no sense (but Surfers do, it’s even perfectly placed in the calendar).

      My big head-scratcher is no A1-Ring. Isn’t the track owned by the Red Bull guy? Why the guy that ones 25% of the grid would not want that his series run at his circuit?

      Between Jun 14 and August 13 there’s exactly 2 races (Silverstone and a French race, no less) in 2 months. That actually makes a lot of sense in a Calendar created by the teams.

      1. There’s a fair bit of work to do on the A1-ring track, it’s been near enough demolished.

        1. Well, that explains it.

    2. Like i said earlier there will not be F1 race in Finland. And that is fact not rumor.

  44. If Sky get the (proposed) “new F1” I won’t be watching.

    We went for the opposition – Virgin Media

    And I ain’t gonna get both VM and Sky

  45. If Britain were to have another round, I’m rather fond of Brands Hatch

    and, well this is kind of a joke suggestion for a German Grand Prix, but can anyone see F1 cars duking it out at the Norisring?

  46. I’m hoping that FOTA doesn’t neuter circuits or drop them or not choose them for the ridiculous saftey reasons that F1 has been lately. Motor racing is dangerous.

  47. No Sepang! As a fan in Malaysia, its a bit sad, but for the sport, its probably not a bad thing. F1 just isn’t as big as it should be here, so no great loss.

    Lucky for us fans in this part of the world, the Singapore race is on, so that wouldn’t be too bad.

    Since we’re also talking broadcasters, I’m pretty sure the Asian rights will be acquired by ESPN Star, which would be sad. Unless Eurosport Asia picks it up.

  48. I’m praying they come to Laguna Seca. Laguna Seca is one of the greatest race tracks ever, and the Indianapolis race track looks rather icky.

  49. There are plenty of road courses in America better than Indy. C’mon FOTA, you can do better than that. Road America, Road Atlanta, Laguna Seca, Sebring, Long Beach, and Mid-Ohio come to mind immediately. You have to remember Watkins Glen was changed because it couldn’t handle the demands of F1 cars anymore, and that was decades ago. So I don’t see a return there without major modifications.

    Road Atlanta! Please! That track is just fantastic, F1 cars there would be so exciting. Honestly, Sebring is pretty boring. Daytona infield track isn’t all that bad.What about Jarama? That track is great too, I know it was declared too narrow but it would provide some great racing I’m guessing with a little work (Only raced it in Race 07/GTR Evo, not sure how overtaking in current F1 cars would work).

    1. Yes, I would say Daytona is the exception to the roval rule. I have to disagree with you on Sebring though, it’s like two seperate circuits that flow seamlessly into one. Also, I don’t like the layout of Road Atlanta as much as some of the other tracks I listed. It’s just: straight, esses, straight, right turns, straight, turn 10, bend. That’s about it for me.

  50. Prisoner Monkeys
    23rd June 2009, 2:50

    Buenos Aries – Haug shot it down, it’s outdated and it’s a terrible circuit to begin with

    Mexico City – has no garages, no runoff areas; A1GP had to use a tyre chicane

    Jerez – is outdated as Buenos Aries and is so often used as a testing venue that it would simply be another Barcelona

    Algarve – does not have Category-1 rating needed to host Formula One events (but it is close)

    San Marino – also outdated, frequently complained about by the teams

    Monaco – tied to Eccelstone through 2010 even if they say they’ll go with FOTA

    Montreal – possibly in need of a surface upgrade

    Indianapolis – FOTA may not be willing to deal with Tony George again

    Silverstone – Mosley’s comments about a possible return in future were designed to appeal to the BRDC, who hold a by tradition

    Lausitzring – has been in and out of financial troubles since its inception

    Helsinki/Spa – Spa is tied to Bernie, Helsinki sounds like an attempt to appeal to Finland

    Monza – tied to Bernie until 2012

    Abu Dhabi – tied to Bernie until 2012

    Singapore – tied to Bernie unil 2012

    Suzuka – tied to Bernie until 2012

    Adelaide – does not want anything more than V8s; V8s will not take a back seat to Formula One

    Surfers Paradise – no garages to speak of, open-wheel racing outgrew the circuit a decade ago

    1. you could have rather said, “scrap the plan!” don’t you have single good thing about this? :)

      1. I get the impression he doesn’t like F1, just wants to antagonise.

        If i am wrong i apologise.

    2. Maurice Henry
      23rd June 2009, 17:33

      San Marino tore down the old pit and press facilities and rebuilt them sometime ago.

    3. Marilia Compagnoni Martins
      24th June 2009, 5:17

      Buenos Aries – it’s monday

      Jerez – is outdated, are you sure??? Doesn’t pre season tests take place there?

      Algarve – ready to host FOTA event

      San Marino – it was rebuild, wasn’t it?

      Monaco – it’s the only one that has no contract. Monaco doen’t have to pay to host a GP

      Montreal – was taken off because Bernie need to put a freak track on calendar, nothing more

      Indianapolis – don’t know anything about it

      Silverstone – If Bernie gets Silverstone, FOTA can have Donnington

      Helsinki/Spa – Spa is tied to Bernie, Helsinki sounds like an attempt to appeal to Finland, like FIA appealed to Malasia, China…

      Monza – tied to Bernie until 2012, yeah, but has a Ferrari clause, if Ferrari isn’t runing, Monza is free

      Abu Dhabi – tied to Bernie until 2012, yeah, but they said they pay the recision

      Singapore – tied to Bernie unil 2012, thanks God

      Adelaide – does not want anything more than V8s; V8s will not take a back seat to Formula One, because they said it was too expensive. FOTA says that they will low down the fee to tracks

  51. As an American watching from afar , Road America and Watkins Glen are not going to happen. As much as I like those historic courses, neither are up ” FIA ” requirements. RA too dangerous for F1 around the kink ; needs to be more like the current Spa – Blanchimont corner for run-off. But for those of us that have marshalled there before ; there are rail tracks directly behind the kink. That makes it difficult to extend run-off….. Watkins needs a complete safety makeover. ChampCar would not not there , IndyCars who cares ???
    Laguna maybe ; think maybe GPDA and or FOTA might want some more run-off around the corkscrew and surrounding.

    Went to Indy for MOTOGP last year and it was great, the new layout works just fine.

    BTW this weekend at Road America is Ferrari Challenge for only 10 USDollars entry !
    See you there !
    Go FOTA !

    1. Prisoner Monkeys
      23rd June 2009, 3:08

      think maybe GPDA and or FOTA might want some more run-off around the corkscrew and surrounding.

      It’s not the run-off, it’s the graient of the corner. The Corkscrew drops away very quickly, and if the cars get air underneath them, their aerodynamics beome useless and the drivers get demoted to passengers. Unitl all four wheels are back on terra firma. And given the proximity of the walls to the circuit, they’ll likely regain control far too late.

      And besides, outside the Corkscrew, laguna Seca isn’t very interesting. It desn’t have the pit facilities or grandstands to accomodate Formula one, either.

  52. Prisoner Monkeys
    23rd June 2009, 3:05

    Daytona infield track isn’t all that bad.

    I think that with a few modifications, it could be great. If you get on Google Earth and look at it up-close, there’s a lot that can be done; the road course has several configurations and there’s a wide concrete oncourse that could also be used. Something like this is what I have in mind …

  53. If The FOTA series cars were designed to rely less on aero packages and more on grip of the tyres etc. with no refuelling needing a larger fuel tank making the cars heavier, this may make the cars more suitable to more tracks because they may not need so much run off area. It’s usually when the aero fails that cars go off track unless there is mechanical failure. And at a circuit like Laguna Seca with the corkscrew, which many think is unsafe for F1 cars, Well maybe as they are designed right now with FIA’s nanny safety rules. BUt if they relied more on tyre grip then there is less chance of cars taking off going through the corkscrew.
    Aero is the killer in F1, it slows the cars down when they don’t get it right and doesn’t allow cars to drive safely behind other cars. There needs to be less reliance on aero so we can race at a better choice of circuits.

    Just my opinion.

    1. Prisoner Monkeys
      23rd June 2009, 3:55

      And at a circuit like Laguna Seca with the corkscrew, which many think is unsafe for F1 cars, Well maybe as they are designed right now with FIA’s nanny safety rules. BUt if they relied more on tyre grip then there is less chance of cars taking off going through the corkscrew.

      No. Formula One cars will always have some degree of aerodynamic grip, and the run up to the Corkscrew is reliant upon it. If you remove the aero factor, all you have is glorified touring cars.

  54. Just race the oval at Indy ffs. Is it that hard to figure out? I mean c’mon, if it was good enough for the likes of Clark, Hill, Gurney et al., it sure as hell is good enough for the present-day crop of F1 crybabies.

  55. Mexico City, Monza, Silverstone, Jerez and Surfers are a great start.

    Monaco on the schedule would be WILD!!!!! can’t imagine that happening, same as Singapore. one is traditional to grand prix and the other is new and aligned with bernie.

    drop abu dhabi, lausitz and singapore and I’m a-ok.

    after all the years of arguing with belgium, i thought Spa would be first in line to try and upset the FIA. sad sad. that track is crucial and amazing.

    1. Isn’t Bernie a promoter in Spa? I don’t see them alligning with FOTA unless it comes in package with mr. Ecclestone.

  56. Why not Belle Isle?

  57. Not Indy, Laguna Seca would be a lot better.

    Why Singapore? I thought drivers prefered Sepang? Or use both for back to back races so the Europeans can have a long haul holiday and 2 races. Or is this because of contracts?

  58. I’ve just had a thought, yes i do have them from time to time lol.
    I hope FOTA can do a better job of creating anew series than those who did GRAND PRIX MASTERS.
    That was a big disappointment.

  59. Eddie Irvine
    23rd June 2009, 8:49

    I would like to see A1 ring in this calender, magnificent circuit and it could well include maybe one more track from England like Brands Hatch

  60. I WANT LAGUNA SECA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! dont really care who covers the new better version of F1. New tracks, best drivers. I understand why they want to split up but at same time i dont want them to.

  61. Jonesracing82
    23rd June 2009, 8:55

    i’d drop imola and add spa and Brazil, i am guessing those 2 are missing thanx to an FIA Contract!

  62. As an Australian, and someone that lives in Adelaide. Having the new series come back here would be great. Regardless of how fantastic the V8 Supercars are here opening the series..F1 destroys that IMO. Having the seasons closing race for F1 again would be fantastic, and we can still always have the V8’s out on the same weekend. CART and V8 worked in Surfers. No reason why V8 and F1 cannot co-exist on the one weekend. Maybe the V8 races could be shorter, like 150km instead of 250km. What a weekend that would be.

    1. I think FOTA in adelaide would be awesome. They could run it on the same weekend as Clipsal. Say have the V8s on at 1:00, they would be finished by 3:30-4:00 then have a FOTA twilight race. The FOTA race would start around 5:00-6:00 and be finished by 7:30-8:00 and then the organisers could keep the after race concerts that atract so many to Clipsal. Having the twilight race would also increase the european tv coverage like they tried with the Australian GP in Melbourne this year.

    2. If sharing the weekend is such a big deal why can’t they be on different time-slots? Circuit de Catalunya has different time-slots for Moto GP and F1 and it works fine…

      Oh wait, it isn’t a permanent race-track, right?

      1. Nah its a street circuit. The state government has enough trouble getting the track built once a year and it would be impossible for them to build it twice a year. Half the track goes through a massive park and all the greenies and tree huggers complain that they cant walk their dogs while the stands are being built. The only way for both the V8s and FOTA to use the track would be for both to be held on the same weekend or on the weekend immediatly following the other with the roads being open between the two events.

  63. Don’t like Abu Dhabi and Singapore, and don’t feel the need of a city track in Helsinki. Also the revised Imola doesn’t appear to me so brilliant.
    I would like Spa and Interlagos, of course. And Watkins Glen would be also better than Indianapolis. Argentine at the new Potrero track, a decent venue for German Gran Prix and we would have a great calendar.
    The revised Zandvoort doesn’t convince me as the old one, and the old Zeltweg is also dead…so I think we’d be finished.

  64. Spa may be missing at the moment, but the guv’ner of that track is Bernies ex wife… :)

    1. really? (i’m learning more about this sport all the time!)

      i heard a couple of days back that Bernie said he lost his marriage due to F1, and he isn’t going to lose F1 due to these squabbles. What would his wife have to say about it? As the owener of one of the best and most loved tracks in the world, she has an ace up her sleeve when it comes to contract renewal and keeeping the teams happy innit!!

      1. I don’t think Slavica got the track promotion rights, she settled for a hefty sum and real-estate…

  65. What about Mugello? Renowed as a beautiful track, it hosts major events such MotoGP and DTM races. Mugello track is owned by Ferrari.

    1. The biggest problem with that track is that it is narrow and there is only one racing line available for the drivers to race on due to the winding nature of the track. That will lead to processional races just as the ones in Barcelona. It is very similar to Magny Course as well.

  66. Aaron Shearer
    23rd June 2009, 10:03

    It would be a shame to lose such a fantastic venue that is Spa. I’d prefer to see some cars flying up Eau-Rouge than one of Hermann Tilke’s ‘great’ designs.

    The list looks quite good besides the fact it doesn’t have any Brazilian Grand Prix on it. Maybe they could acquire the contract in 2012 so we can see some fun at Interlagos.

    One other thing, they should use Long Beach I’d love to see that back on the calendar. Indianapolis is so boring with their road-course configuration.

    Let’s hope that it doesn’t need to come to that and F1 can get sorted out way before then.

  67. As the article points out this list is highly speculative, depending on when FOTA seriously started working on a breakaway series they may not have even got in touch with all these circuits let alone be in advanced talks.

    I see the list only has 17 rounds, which seems to be the usual number of races that F1 has had this decade (although 2003 had 16, 2004 2006 & 2008 had 18 races and 2005 had 19 races). I wonder if 17 is the maximum number of races the teams think is manageable or if they could fit a few more into a season in the long term, I know that this has been mentioned before but I can’t remember the figure.

    Ideally I would also have Spa, Interlagos and possibly Istanbul, and if the maximum number of races was 17, I would drop Imola, Abu Dhabi and Singapore to accommodate them.

    I don’t know anything about a few of the circuits apart from their location such as Laustizring, but I think there should be a German GP.

    In the long term if space can be found I think they should return to South Africa and have Grand Prix in Asia if it is to be a true World Championship.

    The calendar should try to strike the balance between safe guarding classic Grand Prix and making sure certain countries always have a race, have global coverage so that at least every continent has a race, apart from Antarctica obviously, and have a mix of different types of tracks, so a team can’t just design their car for one type of circuit and hope to win the championship.

    1. The current arrangement between Bernie and the teams is that if there are more than 17 rounds in a season, he has to pay them extra. Bernie has been pushing recently for more races per year but the teams have been reluctant to agree, probably because of the cost both financially and in terms of employee morale etc. So it’s no surprise that a FOTA calendar isn’t going to rise above 17 events or so.

  68. Fair but sad not to have Belgium (SPA) & Brazil (Interlagos)

    What will Asian Fan will do.Only 2 Race

    They should at least have Malaysia in it.

    Its close 2 Bangladesh

  69. Keith,

    There is an excellent amount of information on venues in these comments. Why not write a follow-up article with the pro/con of tracks, using these comments plus what you know or speculate?

  70. In the Sunday Times it was rumoured that Kyalami was to be given a place. Possible as well – it’s been redesigned and A1GP raced there.

    Don’t understand why they would go to Abu Dhabi – especially instead of Turkey.

  71. I am delighted that FOTA plans to break away. This Bernie/Maxy combo havs very effectively killed the joy of watching F1 racing.
    If Vijay Mallya is out, thats to bad. Atleast he did do one thing well – he has aptly named his team as he has “Forced India” to the back of the grid.

  72. If that’s the actual list they’re planning, I hope that they can get Spa, Interlagos and Potrero de los Funes in there somehow. With all the big teams and drivers in the FOTA series, I really hope the TV companies will favour it over Bernie’s neutered F1.

  73. Yes, Istanbul is one of my favourite, also.
    There are some problem for Mugello. The track is wonderful, more similar to Spa than Magny Cours. Fast corners, great gradients, a long straight to pass. The problem is the narrow lane, the poor run-off areas and the fact that it is difficult to reach. You have just local streets and nowhere to park…you can’t imagine the chaos when Moto GP is there.

  74. GooddayBruce
    23rd June 2009, 13:47

    This calendar is clearly nonsense. A transparent attempt to put pressure on Max.

    The thought of bringing the race back to Adelaide is the most hilarious. The lap times would be about 45seconds, it would never pass a safety inspection.

    I think that a FOTA calendar would likely include a race in Bahrain, considering how much Bahraini money goes into the team’s coffers. It’s not that bad a venue anyhow.

  75. I see that the tracks, dates and drivers as well as teams are set, BUT and it a BIG BUTTTTT, WHAT ARE THEY GOING TO CALL THEMSELVES? Formula freedom? Formula X? Formula unlimited. that is what i like to know…. F1 unplugged is my favorite…

    Keith you should start a pole to see what are the fan’s options and then present it to FOTA, since they want things that make sense to the fans. we might as well name the series….

    1. F-Zero!

      (“You have boost power!”)

  76. Honestly, If the split really happens, the best short-term sollution, for Brazil, would be a street circuit, rather than trying to rebuild or revive our other race tracks, like Curitiba, Brasília, Tarumã, the almost-extinct Jacarepaguá…

    For this, a seaside race in a Monte Carlo-style would ideal in Salvador, if the streets weren’t too narrow (there was a Brazilian Formula Renault round in Salvador, in 2005, in the downtown neighborhood of Comércio, with spetacular views, but it was too hard to overtake), but, otherwise, in Rio de Janeiro I think it could happen, because the avenues are broader, the city is used to stopping the traffic in special weekends (for marathons and thriatlon events) and there would be a great view of the Sugar Loaf. With this, the only significant improvements would be placing top quality tarmac, that any brazilian city would pleasantly welcome, and the provisional grandstands and safety barriers, and two or three adaptations to create broader corners…

    Another option would be a street circuit in Brasilia, but it could possibly become a Phoenix-like circuit…

  77. No Brands
    No Paul Ricard
    No Zandvort

    No way!

    1. No Brands
      No Paul Ricard
      No Zandvort

      No way!

      Paul Ricard is owned by Excelis a company owned by Bernie Ecclestone. So unless Bernie joins FOTA a race at Paul Ricard is not going to happen.

  78. Salut Gilles
    23rd June 2009, 14:33

    As somebody mentioned earlier, some of the dates scheduled for these races are Wednesdays and Thursdays.

    And if Mexico doesn’t even have garages…

    Sounds to me like this is a complete fabrication on the part of the Guardian.

    1. Prisoner Monkeys
      23rd June 2009, 14:46

      Actually, it’s a second-hand source: a Slovakian journalist published it about two days after FOTA went rogue.


    I really hope this breaks and it will cost Mosley job… I know we won’t die of starvation… But I can wish it! ;)

  80. What’s the novelty about Singapore? Why was it retained? Am a fan from Singapore but kinda thought Singapore was quite processional too. Would love a race here, but would prefer a “real” race far away than a procession near.

  81. All great! Big returns! A slap at Bernie with Indy and Canada and the great PORTIMÃO track in PORTUGAL !!!

    ***** STARS

    FIA Calendar can’t be better – the best races they have/had, FOTA has – Monaco, Singapure and Abu Dabi and FOTA win in Japan – Suzuka it ten times better than Fuji!

    FIA’s Formula One could keep the name , but will be a kind of GP2 to the real thing, call it FORMULA GOLD, for now, until them came up with a name! :)

  82. I’d like to see 3 races in the US as Martin suggested. That would get US fans into it in a huge way. I don’t think it should happen immediatelythough but over2 or three years would be fine with me. I would like it to be Watkins, Elkheart and Laguna as well. I also think that 20 races should be held and think that the that new road course in Argentina should be one of them. I like the idea of using tracks that are scenic as well as having history is important. They could also move the races around from year to year in order to give more fans a chance to attend a Grand Prix in their lifetime. It is or will be a world championship afterall. Let’s spread the fun around, and not get greedy. Greed is what has gotten us into this situation in the first place.
    I’d hate to loose Brazil, they’ve contributed so much to the sport, and I’d love to see France back on the schedule at Paul Ricard, or wherever it was where Arnoux and Villeneuve had their wonderful fight for second place. That was one of the greatest moments in F1 mymemory

  83. Sorry to not have mentioned it in my earlier missive but I was thinking that every year FOTA could invite bids from cities for a grand prix and in so doing it would bring a further excitement to the years schedule, with the anticipation of which city would get the race and waht the course might entail. This might further broaden the audience for FOTA Grand Prix. There are cities all over the world that might jump at the chance to host, on a once only basis just for the exposure, and it would give FOTA a great image of taking the racing to the people.


  84. Why bash Indy, I have been there several times and enjoyed watching the race (except for the one!) But come on people, do we really think this will happen? I for one would love to see a series void of those f$^%heads bernie and max, but how many of these tracks are up to F1 standards and could be ready for a race as soon as next year? Hate to be a wet blanket but I do not think this will happen.

    1. maybe the regulations of the new series might not be as strict so some circuits may be suitable, which wouldn’t for F1. I’m sure the cars and circuits can be safe without putting too many restrictions in the rules like i believe FIA does.

  85. What about the Nurburgring…the long course. Lot’s of history, lot’s of excitement, and it takes a real driver to do it well.

  86. They should have the season end in argentina at the Potrero de los Funes circuit in San Luis.

  87. As a canadian I’m happy to have a race back, but I really would like the city of Montreal to build a new track or move the race to Quebec City and and do a street circuit. A street race in montreal would be nice as well. After all, they get 300,000 people to go every year and the Gilles Villenueve stands only hold about 120,000. I’m convinced that Canada, especially montreal or even Quebec City could have an amazing spectacle of a race.

    1. It would be a mistake to go away from Gilles Villeneueve circuit. It is an amazing venue and I don’t think I ever saw a dull f1 race there…

    Go back to imola,adelaide,mexico,montreal,and suzuka.

  89. COME ONNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN stop argueing about what calendar they should have. i would rather F1 was all one thing and not 2 series.

    What i do what is the F1 calendar each year to be diffrent. Different tracks, different order ( street venues are understandable if there the same date every year ).

    Please!!!!! im with fota but i really do want them to stay within the F1 and race all the tracks like SPA

  90. I was just thinking. For the U.S. GP, why not us Infineon? I don’t know the whole history of the track but I think it would do the job.
    Some people had mentioned ovals and how the new FOTA league should have a couple. I for myself, and few other people I know think that that would be awful. The whole reason I like F1 is because they don’t use ovals. I watched the Indy 500 this year and holy crap was it ever boring, except a few crashes, but they just drive around in the same boring circle, they all pit at the same time, which to be honest was the most exciting part of the race because then people were actually passing each other.
    A street circuit in New York would be pretty neat. But that is what they should do. Pick 3 or 4 cities and rotate them every year. New York, Miami, San Fancsico, and try another historical city like Boston.
    The Canadian GP should be moved to a street circuit in Quebec City or build a new track in montreal.

  91. Nurburgring, Nordschleife…a dream that will never come true. It is really off the safety standards.
    Arnoux and Villeneuve fight was in Dijon, a narrow and short track, even if quite spectacular. Another track that would need an expensive update to comply F1 standards…

  92. Boring! F1’s stupid.

    1. Then why bother coming on a F1 website m8?

  93. If FOTA cannot get Silverstone or Donnington for their calendar then i have a suggestion, though it may need a slight upgrade.

    The TOP GEAR TEST TRACK!!!!!!!!! yes?

    And they could have The Stig drive the safety car….

    sorry i meant Michael Schumacher. Nope wrong Lord Lucan. Nope wrong again Osama Bin laden. Nope mr. Blobby.

    no really I KNOW the identity of the STIG. it is……

    Keith Collantine.

  94. Perhaps some of the tracks missing have an exclusive contract with Bernie.

  95. pescara,bremgarten,nord schleiffe, reims, east london that s tracks i want see drivers like hamilton and alonso in that circiuts

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