The Brazilian Grand Prix could be under threat beyond this year's event due to a delay in completing renovation works at Interlagos.
One of F1's longest-serving and most iconic races, Interlagos' current deal with Bernie Ecclestone runs until 2020 but remains dependent on renovations to the pit-lane and paddock complex being completed.
Though headway had been made in time for the 2016 race, the second phase of the development has stalled as Brazil's faces financial and political crisis in the wake of impeachment for President Dilma Rousseff and the pressures applied by the impending Olympic Games in Rio this summer.
As a result, Ecclestone has signalled dissatisfaction that works may not be completed and, according to Auto Motor Und Sport
, this could nullify its contract beyond 2016. Brazil has hosted a round of the F1 world championship since 1973, most at Sao Paulo's Interlagos circuit, but Ecclestone is also understood to be applying pressure to TV company Globo to up its coverage.
The threat to Brazil comes as F1 continues to explore new markets as longer-running 'heritage' events struggle to find the funding to meet new contract demands. The Italian and German races are already under threat beyond 2016, with new events – potentially Las Vegas – seemingly waiting in the wings, while F1 heads to Azerbaijan for the first time this week with the 'Grand Prix of Europe' event.