Jarno Trulli, Renault, A1-Ring, 2003

F1 tipped to return to Austria in 2014

2014 F1 calendarPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Jarno Trulli, Renault, A1-Ring, 2003The 2014 F1 calendar will include a return to Austria according to a report in the Austrian newspaper Kurier.

It quotes a Red Bull statement claiming an agreement has been reached between Bernie Ecclestone and Dietrich Mateschitz to revive the event which last took place ten years ago. The race will take place on July 6th.

The race will be held at the Red Bull Ring, formerly the A1-Ring, which was last used for F1 races between 1997 and 2003. The A1-Ring is a truncated version of the Osterreichring which held the Austrian Grand Prix between 1970 and 1987.

The 4.3km, ten-turn circuit was reopened in 2011 after being purchased by Red Bull.

New races are also planned in Sochi, Russia and New Jersey, USA, which could potentially increase the number of races next year to 22.

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111 comments on “F1 tipped to return to Austria in 2014”

  1. List of things I didn’t expect to happen. It’ll be good to have another European race, especially one in a fairly central area, even if the track is rather meh.

    1. Well someone in Europe has money ;)

    2. @lin1876 It’s the first new European race since Valencia (which ran from 2008-2012). And to put things in context, the next newest European circuit on the calendar is the Circuit de Catalunya, which ran its first F1 race in 1991.

      1. It’s not a new european circuit, really.
        By that definition the Nürburgring was a ‘new’ european race when F1 came back in 1995. And Spielberg as well from 1997 until 2003.

        1. @dennis The new Nurburgring was first on the calendar in 1984-1985 (as the German GP, if I’m not mistaken). Spielberg and Red Bull Ring are one and the same circuit too.

    3. Especially since it was reported a year ago, in 2012, that Bernie denied being approached by Red Bull about this to replace Turkey. Granted this was for another season, but he mentioned the hotel disaster surrounding the track, etc. Guess they fixed the hotel problem, and not the first time Bernie has been known to lie.


      1. I’m from Austria and one of my grandparents was born right around the corner in Zeltweg (only about five kilometers from the track), so the area is quite familiar to me.

        There are only four comparatively small municipalities close to the track worth mentioning with a population of 7 to 11k each. A few more of those lie in between the Red Bull Ring and the state capital Graz (about an hour away by car).

        I can confidently say, that they haven’t fixed the hotel problem, because that would require major construction in the area and no such thing happened to my knowledge. I’m sure, that small establishments like bed-and-breakfasts will see an upsurge from this news, but it’s doubtful, if it will be able to cater to the required number of visitors.

        There’s plenty of rooms available in Graz and its surroundings, but the distance from the track and the required travel makes that a bit inconvenient.

    4. I’m really excited too – now I’ve plans for July next year. A race “around the corner” on a decent track :)

    5. I have to say that I love the track even if it’s only because of the beautiful surroundings. I’m more concerned is with how much more money can Red Bull inject in the championship, I’m starting to think they own all the interest.

  2. It’s also on the Red Bull Ring Facebook page.


    They gave a date of July 6, 2014, occupying the spot formerly taken by Valencia, as well as the spot they occupied as the A1-Ring from 1998-2000.

    1. That’s the provisional date given on the Silverstone website for the British GP. It will be interesting to see the calendar.

  3. I wouldn’t complain if a grand prix took place at the Red Bull Ring. I love to see F1 returning to countries and circuits as I think it really brings out the heritage of the sport. It is also an older circuit another positive for F1 in the present day, I personally think there are too many modern circuits now and I would love to see some of the older circuits return which I think have a better design. They have a better flow and more fast speed corners instead of sharp turns and 90 degree corners or a street circuit which may look good on paper or have success because of the area but then produce a mediocre grand prix. Overall I think that the return of an older circuit would be good for F1 as we would get to see a classic track return with a good layout which could produce a good race.

    1. True, but it’s probably gonna be modernised(no graveltraps and so on.)

      1. It already is, just check the DTM races there.

      2. There are some modernizations all around the track, but the racing experience should remain exactly the same as it was in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s.

        The reason for that? Mateschitz/Red Bull had begun to tear apart the A1 Ring when they bought it, but a heavily limited environmental notice didn’t make the reconstruction (which would have included the old parts of the Österreichring) financially viable. After that, Red Bull decided to re-build the track exactly as it was before.

    2. thatscienceguy
      23rd July 2013, 14:08

      More high speed corners? The Red Bull Ring is long straight, sharp corner, long straight, sharp corner, long straight, sharp corner, bit of a sweeper, bit of a sweeper, 90 degree turn, 90 degree turn.

      Abu Dhabi has as many sweepers as Red Bull Ring. The 90 degree turns are relatively open, but still really not sweeping corners.

      Abu Dhabi is obviously worse than RB Ring for a range of other reasons, and I’m pretty sure we’ll see a cracking race, but to suggest RB Ring is some classic style track is just really untrue.

  4. I’m sure, that another race will be stricken instead, or maybe New Jersey will fail for some reason, as there’ve been many doubts about their success.

    Maybe I’m a bit biased because I have driven the track a couple of times myself, but I like it quite a bit. It can’t hold a candle in terms of splendor of the area of and around the track when compared to Tilke’s usual monster-sized tracks, but compare it to traditional European tracks and it can hold its own.

  5. Oh, and as for the number of races, I think we’ll still end up with 20 – I think Korea gets dropped, and one of Sochi or New Jersey will not push through (more likely Sochi won’t push through).

    1. Actually, I’ve seen more concerning reports about New Jersey than Sochi. At that, rumor has it, a Russian GP could be held on a street circuit in St. Petersburg. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Korean GP go, though.

  6. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
    23rd July 2013, 12:27

    Nice to hear. But their is a problem “Red Bull Ring”, nice bit of advertising there. They could fix races, not cool.

    1. @full-throttle-f1 How does the fact that their name is on the track make it possible for them to “fix races”?

    2. What are the odds on the Winner’s Trophy being a large Red Bull can?

    3. So every time Ferrari win a Santander sponsored race it’s a fix?

      Ironically the Red Bull Ring will probably be one of the least suit tracks for RBR with the long straights.

    4. If Dietrich Mateschitz had that much influence on stewards, regulations and race results, he probably would not wait until a race on the track he owns to use that influence. Every race would be sponsored by Red Bull (or Santander, Vodafone).

      Renault hardly won any ING sponsored races, Ferrari didn’t win every single race at the Autodromo Enzo e Dino Ferrari, Honda never won a modern GP at Suzuka and Toyota didn’t stand a chance at winning Fuji 2007 or 2008. But since it’s Red Bull, I guess we should make sure we keep the conspiracy theories on speed-dial.

    5. teampenske3
      23rd July 2013, 14:51

      It’s no different that Suzuka or Fuji, which are owned by Honda and Toyota, respectively.

    6. Sure, and Lord Lucan is hiding in the commentary box.

    7. The spectators in Austria have seen more than enough fixed races there already.

  7. Excellent news! I just hope they don’t make any modifications to add a kilometer-long straight and a dozen 90 degree corners, to make it more “modern”. F1 needs an old-fashioned short track.

    Plus, it’s always good to see F1 go to a country with an established fan base.

  8. It’s obviously not a patch on the Osterreichring but the Red Bull Ring is sufficiently different from most other tracks on the calendar that I think it’s a worthy addition to the calendar. They might have to do something about those kerbs, though.

    Also, I think this is the first time we’ve had an announcement that a race will take place on a track that’s already been built since the Japanese Grand Prix at Fuji in 2007.

    1. The first section of the Osterreichring still exists so far as I can see – it’s a shame they don’t consider integrating it into the new circuit. That said, I agree – it’s a nice change from yet another inner city street circuit.

      1. I’ve already said so in another reply here in the comments, but just to reiterate quickly:

        Mateschitz (Red Bull), Stronach (Magna, the Canadian automobile parts supplier) and KTM (think motorbikes) were planning a joint venture to re-vitalize the A1 Ring with the original parts of the Oesterreichring included. They had already begun to tear up the track in preparation for the planned construction. It sadly didn’t come to that because of environmental concerns. Red Bull, the then-and-now owners, re-built it exactly as it was before.

    2. They’d gotten rid of the sausage kerbs for the FR3.5 races this past weekend.

      1. @jamesremuscat Makes sense – I can’t see the GPDA being happy with them.

    3. Those curbs are gone now thankfully!

    4. @keithcollantine What about 2009 and the Donnington announcement?

  9. Jake (@jakehardyf1)
    23rd July 2013, 12:31

    Brings back memories of the the Schumi – Hakkinen battles there

    1. Yep. Remember 98? Schumi allbut through the kitchen sink at Mika to get past and then spun off track. He still managed to finish third after ripping through the field.

      The second half of 90’s decade was just epic in terms of racing.

      1. Jake (@jakehardyf1)
        24th July 2013, 3:38

        Yeah he out braked himself I remember going into a right hander on the outside. Mika held strong and Fisi took Schumi’s position for a bit.

    2. Ben (@scuderia29)
      24th July 2013, 3:21

      @jakehardyf1 yeah thats what i remember when i think of the A1 ring too :)

  10. Finally some good news regarding F1’s calendar. I almost can’t believe it.

    A return for the A1 Ring is long overdue, to be honest, and so is the addition of more / new european tracks to the calendar. Also, for someone who lives in the eastern side of Europe, this is gonna become the most accessible race in the calendar, next to Hungaroring. I’m genuinely happy!

  11. Think I might put a bet for a Red Bull 1-2 and a Toro Rosso 3-4 next year.

    1. @davef1 unless they both build epic cars I highly doubt it: as has been pointed out, ironically the Red Bull Ring isn’t suited to the Red Bull Racing design philosophy!

  12. We’re rapidly getting to the stage where there are far too few spots on the calendar for the tracks that want them. If the rumors of Thailand, Mexico and Argentina angling for a race are true along with the New Jersey race, Sochi in Russia and now the return of the A1 Ring, then someone’s going to lose out big-time, and I just pray it isn’t somewhere like Spa or Suzuka.

    1. Spa is under contract. Suzuka is not.

      And to be perfectly honest, losing Suzuka might be a good thing. Red Bull have dominated there in the recent past, and I have long suspected that they approach it as the race where their championship bid becomes serious. Taking that away from them won’t hurt.

      1. Suzuka being removed being seen as a ‘good thing’ just because one team has recently done very well there isn’t a good enough reason for me. It’s a great track, often cited as a favourite from the drivers and spectators, and I love watching F1 there. It’s a perverse logic that says removing a classic track is good, just to possibly hinder one team.

      2. Suzuka will be a big lost as I don’t see why they will get dropped as I will like to see 22 Races on the calendar

    2. Yosi (@yoshif8tures)
      23rd July 2013, 13:09

      Well if Honda are back in 2014 then Suzuka should be pretty safe, seeingas it’s their home race and owned by Honda.

      1. Good point, hadn’t thought of that. Suzuka is off the endangered list!

        1. @colossal-squid. I don’t see why. Suzuka fell into that alternating deal with Fuji while Honda had a full-fledged works team.

          Furthermore, there’s nothing clearing Spa and Interlagos… let’s hope they can manage the callendar.

          1. Suzuka is… back on the endangered list? This comment section is an emotional rollercoaster for me. No track is safe!

            Seeing Suzuka, Spa or Interlagos go would be absolutely horrible. We can hope, but if the powers that be start talking about markets or brand exposure or profile, or any other buzzword, what chance does somewhere like Spa have?

          2. @colossal-squid & @guilherme – The reason for the alternating deal with Fuji is easily explained. The Suzuka track is just about profitable but not enough to be worth it normally. There’s motivation enough to keep the Grand Prix in the country right now, but they had no problem to switch with another Japanese race-track every second year when they had the chance in years past.

            As far as I know, Suzuka has a current deal until 2018 and should be safe. This isn’t fully confirmed, but I read about it from a person of authority in the f1onboard dot com message board some months ago. While that never made it into the news, it might just become public later in the year, when Formula 1 visits Japan again.

    3. Of course Spa is also contracted until at least 2015, so it won’t be until 2016 (if at all) when Spa goes. Korea seems the most likely to drop currently. Sadly though I do fear that the NJ GP may never materialise.

      Also, Thialand’s organisation seems shambolic so fingers crossed that doesn’t happen (I get the impression that the race track will be abysmal and there won’t be a massive interest) but I reckon Mexico for sure will be on the horizon considering the increasing involvement in F1 from its drivers and sponsors. Argentina perhaps but I’m not so sure on that one.

      So that’s the 19 races we have now for next season, + Russia, + Austria, + Mexico & possibly + NJ. That’s 22/3 races and I reckon Korea will be gone sooner rather than later considering it has been running at a loss since its initiation and there is almost no Korean involvement in F1 besides the race. So lets say we have 21 races at the start of 2015 as a preliminary (NB no NJ or Korea despite it being contracted to run): if there’s only one more space in Bernie’s 22 race calendar, does Thialand or Argentina get the slot?

      1. I agree that the New Jersey GP won’t happen. Ever since I heard it was delayed until next year, I have written it off as ever happening. This news makes it look more unlikely as well, and Sochi does seem likely to be ready next year. I too will be glad when the Thailand idea is put to bed. Mexico or Argentina would be much more welcome.

        1. NJ will happen and they will get rid of the in season testing

        2. I think germany will be off the calendar fairly soon. Thats probably where austria fits in.

          1. Although I’m Austrian myself, I believe this would be a poor choice and a bad replacement.

            Instead of the Red Bull Ring, the shortest race-track in the season, I’d rather have the two-for-one package I get in Germany with the Hockenheimring and Nürburgring every other year.

  13. Given the recent track record for Ecclestone’s ability to organize races, I don’t think I’ll believe it until I see the cars lined up on the grid.

    1. What, one race that didn’t happen when it was planned to?

  14. Maybe we will be dropping the German tracks due to Bernie’s little problems in Germany?

    1. @dodge5847 That didn’t stop him going to the German Grand Prix a week or so before he was indicted, so I don’t think that’s a factor here.

      I don’t think the calendar situation is ever any more complicated than: “Have you got money?” “Yes.” “OK, here’s your grand prix.”

      1. Well said, Keith….

      2. @Keithcollantine , you have a fair point and I tend to agree with you. Just stirring, lol.

      3. Isnt the nurburg ring practically bust? Can hockenheim ring afford a gp every year alone? Maybe austria is its replacement?

  15. Well some say this ist the first new European race announced since Valencia. I hate to disagree but technically Russia is geographicly part of Europe and Asia, I even believe Sochi is in the European part of Russia. So therefore Russia was before Austria. I hate to be such a know-it-all.

    All in all great news for F1 I say!

  16. If this is true and all goes ahead, would Silverstone be most likely shuffled forwards or backwards from the provisional date on their website?

  17. Also, this is surely going to be the shortest lap on the F1 calendar. The 2003 pole position time was under 70 seconds, and over four seconds less than the current shortest on the calendar, Brazil.

    Of course what’s going to happen to lap times next year is a point of debate.

  18. This would be fantastic news! I used to love the races at the A1-Ring. The elevation changes, picturesque setting, long straights and short overall length make it a distinct challenge. The F1 World Championship should feature the ultimate mix of tracks, not just a 20-something list of “Tilkedromes”. Having Austria back on the calendar enhances the Championship.

    With all the moaning about blue flags that’s going on at the moment in F1, it will be fascinating to see how Vettel & Alonso scythe through the traffic on a track that should be negotiated in around 1min 10secs.

    1. Actually, Red Bull Ring was rebuilt by Tilke. But it sure is a beautiful setting. Looking forward to it.

    2. This is what I love most about blind Tilke-bashers.

      Tilke has constructed a number of great circuits. It’s the relative homogenization of each, despite the fact that most every one of his circuits is visually unique and correspondent to its home nation, that people fuss about. Which is entirely on the FIA’s standards – if it wasn’t Tilke, if it was an engineering firm named Alexander, we’d all be Alexander-bashers.

      But I feel that the concept of a ‘world championship’ (or pretty much any calendar for any racing series) should be as diverse as possible. This is a welcome change, even if we cannot get Istanbul (another Tilke circuit!) back and probably never will.

  19. Amaizing ! a new race, at a permanent track, in Europe ! didn’t see that one coming !

  20. I know everyone’s saying what a change it makes, but I hate to say it, Tilke actually built this track :)

    I love it, though. Good memories. Happy to see it back!

    1. Yep, but that was still the young and exciting tilke, he’s built some horror tracks in the past couple of years but sure he has also done good work for the sport. See Sepang is not to bad is it?

      1. Yeh, Sepang really is quite good.

        And in fairness, with the A1 he just had to shorten a current track, so it wasn’t a ‘clean sheet’ design, as such.

        1. And in fairness, with the A1 he just had to shorten a current track, so it wasn’t a ‘clean sheet’ design, as such.

          He didn’t just shorten it though, The only part of the current track that is the same as it was on the old layout is the start/finish straght, Everything else was altered.

          He redesigned the entire circuit & basically rebuilt it from scratch.

          Whats now the Red Bull Ring was always a very popular circuit amongst drivers, It also always produced good races with good levels of overtaking so I dread to think what DRS will do to it.

          1. Not quite right. The current layout uses more parts of the original track than only the start finish straight.
            Look here:

          2. Fair, but let’s be honest, it was just a shortened version. Look at the map posted below and i’m sure it didn’t take too long to figure out what he needed to do with it, especially with the new safety standards to be met.

    2. Lol, great point! I agree that he did well with this track.

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