Canadian GP dropped from 2009 Formula 1 calendar

Canadian GP - GroundHog

FIA today announced the 2009 Formula 1 calendar. Compared with the provisional calendar published a while ago there is one big change – the Canadian GP in Montreal is missing for the first time since 1987. There was no reason given (at least for now). This means that after inclusion of Abu Dhabi the 2009 Formula 1 calendar will have 18 races, same as this year. This also means there will be no Formula 1 races in North America next year. What will remain after dropping Canada is the summer break.


There were rather serious problems with the track surface this year in Canada but until this suprising announcement I haven’t heard any suggestions about Canadian Grand Prix being in danger. This Montreal race was every year one of my favourite races and this year I went there to watch the GP live. I had a great time at a great track in a great city. I am quite sad to see this race go …

Here is a race day photo and sound report from 2008 Canadian GP
Here is my 2008 Canadian GP photo gallery

The 2009 Formula 1 Calendar:

29 March – Australia
5 April – Malaysia
19 April – Bahrain
10 May – Spain
24 May – Monaco
7 June – Turkey
21 June – Great Britain
28 June – France
12 July – Germany
26 July – Hungary
— summer break —
23 August – Europe (Valencia)
30 August – Belgium
13 September – Italy
27 September – Singapore
11 October – Japan
18 October – China
1 November – Brazil
15 November – Abu Dhabi

9 Comments Post a Comment
  1. StewNo Gravatar says:

    This is to say the least, disturbing to me. You know I’m Canadian and this is my grand prix. Here there has been no speculation about this in any news from Montreal on west so it is a surprise.

    Finances may be an issue especially with no US GP, but I’m only guessing and waiting for reaction from here in Canada. It should be good.

    The other thing is this could simply be Bernie Ecclestone’s way of negotiating.

    Stews last blog post..BMW Sauber Hold on to Kubica and Heidfeld for 2009

    • F1WolfNo Gravatar says:

      I haven’t heard anything about Canada being in danger and after reading this news I thought I missed some news on that in the past … But looks like this is something that at least on the surface came out of the blue … Someone from organizers messed up with Bernie recently ?

      At the moment we can only speculate:
      - something to do with the track surface problems – perhaps time off for track renovation ?
      - with no US GP the trip to Canada perhaps not cost efficient ? (there were some talks about this issue last year already after US GP was dropped)
      - as you say Bernie playing hard to get, and this is only part of his game to squeeze as much as possible …

      The bad news for Canada and 2009 is that there seems to be no room for the race in the calendar as published …

      How glad I am now I decided to go to Montreal this year instead of waiting till 2009 …

  2. F1WolfNo Gravatar says:

    It gets more mysterious:

    “In a surprising statement issued by the organisers of the Canadian Grand Prix, it was revealed that no news of plans to axe North America’s single Formula One event had reached them prior to its announcement.

    The Canadian GP was removed from the 2009 calendar by the FIA’s World Motor Sport Council earlier today, with no explanations given.

    “The organisers of the Canadian Grand Prix have learned through the media of the Canadian Grand Prix’s removal from the 2009 Formula One championship calendar,” the two-paragraph French-language statement reads.

    “Consequently, no comments will be issued before speaking with the interested parties, Formula One Management (FOM) and the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA).”

    The news hit Montreal like a storm, provoking strong reactions among fans towards the FIA, which is accused of showing disrespect towards the long-standing event. The race has taken place on the famous circuit Gilles-Villeneuve every year since 1987.

    In an interview with Radio-Canada, Montreal Mayor Gérald Tremblay spoke of an important loss of 75 million dollars for the local economy, adding that he was going to contact Canadian GP promoter Normand Legault to “see what we can do.”

    In 2006, Legault stated that an agreement maintaining the Canadian round of the championship until 2011 had been reached with Bernie Ecclestone.”

  3. Allan de la PlanteNo Gravatar says:

    Good morning fellow followers of Formula One,

    Having been at the first Formula One race at Mosport in 1967 and a devoted follower of this sport to the point of working with Giles Villeneuve, the man considered by many to be the fastest and most exciting driver of all time in Formula One. I was disturbed to wake this morning to the news the Canadian event has been dropped from next year’s calendar. Without any North American event it seems little a ‘World Championship’ series any longer. I understand this is all about money, as it usually is, but there are some locations and events that are part of the foundation of this sport. Drop England, drop France, drop Germany, better still, drop Monaco due it’s complete failure to meet modern day safety standards and see the reaction. I hope Canadians don’t do what they are well known for and that is to sit there on their respective arses and just say ‘Oh well’.
    If it’s money, and as I said I suspect it is, say so and stop playing the political bullshit that permeates the world we live in. Sort out the problem and put Canada where it belongs, on the series calendar.

    I find it hard to think we are having this discussion.

    Respectfully,

    Allan de la Plante
    Vancouver CANADA

  4. StewNo Gravatar says:

    Well put Allan.

    So far it remains a mystery and I’ve been scouring the Quebec papers and no one out there that I can find has an answer for this.

    The US grand prix did share freight costs and now Canada is left holding the bag, but I find it hard to believe that Quebec would let that get in the way. It’s only speculation, but this race is dear to them and they tend to get a little cranky when blind sided.

    Stews last blog post..BMW Sauber Hold on to Kubica and Heidfeld for 2009

  5. [...] decision by WMSC and FIA to omit the Canadian GP from 2009 Formula 1 calendar (without any explanation) caught me by suprise yesterday. Actually surprise is not strong enough word. I was truly shocked. I [...]

  6. [...] the Canadian GP from 2009 F1 calendar was the most shocking outcome of the WMSC meeting this week. But no less controversial are the [...]

  7. [...] about some race organizers looking for a way out of 2009 calendar surfaced around the same time the Canadian GP was dropped. French GP did not feature on F1 calendar only 1 time, back in 1955, following the Le Mans events. [...]

  8. [...] GP photogallery here. And here are the sounds and sights from 2008 Canadian GP the race that Mr. Ecclestone decided to drop [...]

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