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Calendar could swell to 22 races as Vegas talks ramp up

Bernie Ecclestone says he is prepared to up the F1 calendar to 22 races in order to accommodate a potential return to Las Vegas for 2018.
Bernie Ecclestone says he is prepared to swell the Formula 1 calendar to include as many as 22 races as part of a plan to introduce a second American race, potentially in Las Vegas, to the schedule.

The F1 calendar has steadily grown over the last few years from 17 races back in 2000, to 19 as recently as last year to this season's record 21 events, which accommodates the returning German Grand Prix and the new Grand Prix of Europe to be held on the streets of the Azerbaijan capital Baku.

With a race being held now on alternate or back-to-back weekends – save for the mid-summer break – between March and November, F1 has come into some criticism for the growing schedule, with teams feeling it is too much travel for trackside staff, especially those with families.

Undeterred, Ecclestone says he is prepared to increase the schedule to 22 races as he negotiates a deal that could see F1 head to Las Vegas as early as 2018.

Part of the F1 supremo's ongoing desire to have two American events on the schedule, Las Vegas has previously hosted F1, with two poorly-received races taking place in the car park of the renowned Caesars' Palace Hotel in 1981 and 1982, but new plans are in place to return with a street race.

“I don't know at the moment [what will happen]. I was talking to them last night. They've always had a contract.”

Asked whether Las Vegas would result in another event losing its spot, Ecclestone replied:

“I think not. I think another couple of races.

Quizzed further on whether he believes the teams would agree to a 22 race calendar, Ecclestone said 'he doesn't need to ask'.

Either way, several races remain under threat on the current schedule, with the Italian Grand Prix and the German Grand Prix both undecided beyond this season.


by Ollie Barstow



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GlazingVegas

April 05, 2016 2:49 PM

dannycoupe1: I went to the Parking lot disaster no one showed up just like Phoenix why does he think it will be any different ?
So you think that just because they raced on a ****ty track 35 years ago that it couldn't be any different now? Wow. For you if something happened 35 years ago that wasn't successful why even bother trying again. Vegas had 180,000 people in the early 80's. We have over 2 million now. The city isn't even remotely close to what it was 35 years ago. I think it's pointless to make comparisons. We sell out around 120,000 seats at the NASCAR race every year, the Indy/champ car race on the street was a success . I see no reason at all why we couldn't have a good F1 race here in Las Vegas.

Strider

April 05, 2016 3:28 PM

GlazingVegas:
dannycoupe1: I went to the Parking lot disaster no one showed up just like Phoenix why does he think it will be any different ?
So you think that just because they raced on a ****ty track 35 years ago that it couldn't be any different now? Wow. For you if something happened 35 years ago that wasn't successful why even bother trying again. Vegas had 180,000 people in the early 80's. We have over 2 million now. The city isn't even remotely close to what it was 35 years ago. I think it's pointless to make comparisons. We sell out around 120,000 seats at the NASCAR race every year, the Indy/champ car race on the street was a success . I see no reason at all why we couldn't have a good F1 race here in Las Vegas.
The only reason I can see is that we have an already crowded calendar and it would be a shame to see a classic venue such as Monza dropped to squeeze Vegas in.



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