The US GP missing again is a hot topic of the moment. But when looking at the 2009 calendar I am already wondering what other track(s) will we loose in 2010 …
The sudden appearance of Valencia and Singapore street tracks was kind of unexpected. None of these venues were talked about much prior to their inclusion in the 2008 calendar. The rumours appeared and in matter of weeks the races were confirmed. As a result, although we lost the US GP, the 2008 season features one more race than last year – 18 compared to 17 in 2007. With Abu Dhabi the 2009 season will have 19 races. That is 2 more than what is believed to be agreed on in the existing (expired) Concorde Agreement. Judging from recent opinions of some team principals it is hard to see more than 20 races on the F1 calendar – “My firm belief is the season should expand to not more than 20 Grand Prix.” (Ron Dennis), “Twenty is about the right number.” (Nick Fry), “Twenty is a big number, but it’s a sensible number.” (Christian Horner).
For 2010 season however 2 new races are lining up – India and Korea. That would require at least one existing F1 venue to loose the race. If US GP was to return, it would require 2 races to go. And that only and only if the F1 teams agree to race 20 times a year … What race(s) are we not going to see in 2010 ?
Australian GP may be the most vulnerable F1 race at the moment, but their contract will be still on in 2010 and the same will be the case in Kuala Lumpur. Shanghai has a 10 year contract, Turkey is run by Ecclestone, Spa has a deal till 2012. I believe the Brazilian GP contract has also been recently extended. It is hard to see any of the new venues like Valencia, Singapore, Abu Dhabi or Bahrain to disapear anytime soon. While anything can happen in F1 I can’t imaging Monaco being dropped. So who will see the chop in 2010 to make room for India, Korea and possible return of the United States Grand Prix ?