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F1 Azerbaijan GP: Steiner open to 25 F1 race calendar with better planning

Guenther Steiner says he'd be happy to take on an expanded F1 race calendar if the travelling structure was made logistically easier.
Haas team principal Guenther Steiner says he'd be happy to take on an expanded Formula 1 world championship race calendar if the travelling structure was made logistically easier.

Speculation has grown around Liberty Media's plans to increase the number of races on the F1 calendar up to 25 on its current number of 20, which will increase to 21 with the return of the French Grand Prix in 2018, as the new owners look to push the sport into emerging markets.

The rumours have been hit with uncertainty due to the intense additional workload that would be placed on teams, as well as the extra costs, but Steiner sees the potential plans as viable if groupings of flyaway races were made together.

After the Monaco Grand Prix, F1 went to Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix before returning two weeks later for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix this weekend which has effectively seen teams travel across the world and back in the space of a month.

“I'm not opposed to a few more races. What I wish is that the races are more bundled – that we stay in one region and are not going back and forth to Asia, where you go back for one week and then back the next,” Steiner said. “How big the area you group together, I don't really know.

“It needs to be studied of how many F1 races an area can take. For instance, I think it would be difficult to have a race in Abu Dhabi and then another one the next week in Bahrain because we are very close together there.

“But a few more races, if it is well organized, will not be that much more time away for the teams. In general, I have nothing against getting up to 25 races.”

Steiner says he also understands the strain of 25 races in a year might be too much for the team's current structure and changes would be made accordingly in order to maximise its performance both on and off track.

“We just need to plan and maybe relieve some people,” he said. “Maybe not all the people will want to do 25 events, but I think it can all be managed, and if we do it cleverly, it is not so much more.

“There is more cost involved because you travel more. You need more car parts because you run more. But, in general, if we've got enough time to get prepared properly, we always find a way to make things work.”

When asked for one race he'd want to see appear on the F1 calendar that doesn't already exist, Steiner feels returning to the African continent should be seen as a primary goal.

“A race in South Africa would be nice,” Steiner said.

South Africa last hosted an F1 race in 1993 at Kyalami when Alain Prost claimed victory for Williams but since then the sport hasn't return to the continent.
by Haydn Cobb


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
24.05.2017 - Guenther Steiner (ITA) Haas F1 Team Prinicipal
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25.06.2017 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
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25.06.2017 - Race, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM010 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
25.06.2017 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08 and the Safety car
25.06.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 and Marcus Ericsson (SUE) Sauber C36
25.06.2017 - Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H
25.06.2017 - Race, 3rd place Lance Stroll (CDN) Williams FW40
25.06.2017 - Race, 3rd place Lance Stroll (CDN) Williams FW40
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25.06.2017 - Race, 3rd place Lance Stroll (CDN) Williams FW40
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mrfill

June 19, 2017 8:22 PM

Haas always seem to be the first to agree with any loony idea that comes up. Perhaps they're trying to be like the kid in class whose hand always goes up first for everything. The problem we have is that most fans would prefer quality over quantity but the owners are keen on the reverse. There is also precedents where crowds reduce where races are nearby geographically and on the calendar. Sepang & Singapore, COTA and Mexico being examples. The only place it works is Europe.



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