Mexican Grand Prix organisers have missed an initial deadline to keep its current slot on the 2020 Formula 1 calendar amid negotiations to secure its future. 

The event’s current contract expires at the end of the 2019 season, with the future of the race being cast into fresh doubt after the Mexican President suggested its funding could be cut to pay for a new railway project in the country. 

Circuit organisers for the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez venue say they are continuing talks with both F1’s commercial rights holder, Liberty Media, and local authorities with the “best spirit of finding viable alternatives”. 

A statement read: “After the deadline to keep the date of the one that has been enjoyed by the Formula 1 Gran Premio de Mexico, we announce that the organisation of the event has lost the perennial right to keep that date within the 2020 championship, notwithstanding the negotiations with both F1 and the authorities of our country [which] continue with the best spirit of finding viable alternatives for the remainder of this competition in Mexico.”

Mexican driver Sergio Perez recently highlighted his concerns about the development, adding he fears his home country would have to wait up to “50 years” to host an F1 race if it was dropped from the calendar. 

The race returned to the F1 calendar following a 23-year absence in 2015 and has proven a popular addition among both fans and drivers.