Several media outlets including “The Guardian” in England are reporting an alleged calendar for FOTA’s break away Formula One series.
Of most interest to Australian fans is the inclusion of Adelaide as the series finale in November.
Adelaide’s end of year bash was always a highlight of the International F1 year and many GP regulars would be thrilled to see it’s return.
However the listing of Surfers Paradise as an alternative clearly shows the true nature of this calendar.
There is about as much chance of Surfers ever hosting any kind of serious F1 standard race as there is of me hosting the Oscars.
The track is seriously narrow, there is no run off area and the area seriously lacks much of the major infrastructure need to host a GP type event.
The track already struggles to cater for the previous Champcar/IndyCar event so how they would cope with something five times as big is anybody’s guess.
Gold Coast Mayor Ron Clarke sorry, “Former Olympian” Ron Clarke TM, never a fan of the current Gold Coast event has thrown his weight behind a round of the breakaway series.
However the costs involved and the disruption to what is already one of the Country’s major tourist attractions would be huge.
Other venues on the alleged calendar include current F1 cast offs Silverstone and Magny-Cours.
The “leaked” calendar also includes a return to North America with races at Montreal and Indy.
Sadly while it would be great to see some of the tracks announced back on the F1 calendar it’s unlikely to happen.
Most of the existing circuits have contracts with Bernie Ecclestone and unless Bernie decides to jettison Max and the FIA then it will never happen.
Also who will sanction these events? Currently Grands Prix are run under the auspices of a Country’s FIA affiliate.
In some countries like the USA, this wont be a problem but others may find themselves running into serious trouble with their respective State and Federal Governments should they wish to run an “outlaw” F1 series.
And what will they call these races, a check of trademarks here in Australia shows that almost and combination of the words Grand & Prix are fully owned by the Australian Grand Prix Corporation. They got their knickers in a knot over the A1GP so imagine how crazy Uncle Ron Walker and co.. will go over a rival in Adelaide.
Also imagine how feral the Melbourne media will become if they find that their blue riband taxpayer funded event was to be a shoot out between Williams, Force India and half a dozen unknown teams with unknown drivers.
In spite of this it’s clear the the fans seem to be on the side of FOTA and that’ll mean that eventually that’s where Bernie will head.
And if Bernie goes, the FIA will quickly follow, it can’t afford not to.
What do you think?
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RUMOURED CALENDAR (Source: The Guardian)
3 March - Buenos Aires, Argentina (last F1 race: 1998)
21 March - Mexico City, Mexico (last F1 race: 1992)
11 April - Jerez, Spain (last F1 race: 1997)
25 April - Portimao, Portugal
2 May - Imola, Italy (last F1 race: 2006)
23 May - Monte Carlo, Monaco
6 June - Montreal, Canada (last F1 race: 2008)
13 June - Indianapolis, United States (last F1 race: 2007)
1 July - Silverstone, United Kingdom
25 July - Magny-Cours, France (last F1 race: 2008)
15 August - Laustizring, Germany
29 August - Helsinki, Finland
12 September - Monza, Italy
26 September - Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
10 October - Marina Bay, Singapore
24 October - Suzuka, Japan
8 November - Adelaide (last F1 race: 1995) or Surfers’ Paradise, Australia