Formula One race calendar to be pared back to 18 races from 2021

A decision has been taken to cut back on the number of races in Formula One from 20 to just 18 from 2021. From 2025, seven additional race slots will be used to boost…

Formula One race calendar to be pared back to 18 races from 2021

A decision has been taken to cut back on the number of races in Formula One from 20 to just 18 from 2021. From 2025, seven additional race slots will be used to boost a total of 24 races in the Grand Prix calendar.

Monaco will see its race cut to a three-day format after 2023. The race used to be held over three days in 1937 but was reduced to a two-day format in 1993. All of its previous events started on a Saturday, which meant the first race went off on Sunday, giving fans the chance to get together for a good drink.

As a result of this decision, the race will now be held on Wednesday and Thursday.

In a statement, Formula One CEO Chase Carey said: “Formula One is a series that attracts both the world’s greatest drivers and fans and this format of just eight races per season reflects this focus on the most exciting races.”

Under the new formula, the North American Grand Prix will become the second race of the year, with the Brazilian Grand Prix taking its current slot in the second week of October.

Valtteri Bottas, whose current Mercedes team are coming under increasing pressure to deliver this season, praised the move and said: “I think it’s the right move. It shows they are open to continue this route of doing races for different markets and not just having a kind of homogenous calendar,”

Michael Schumacher, who is regarded as the greatest driver ever, only raced in 11 races before his retirement in 2006. Eight of them were in the first half of the year, though, when his last two victories in Monte Carlo were held.

Willy Trieu, who won the French Grand Prix in 1988 when it was the first race held on its new Sunday date, welcomed the decision. He said: “Considering the timescale, you do not expect the schedule to change that drastically, but obviously, this version of F1 is in a situation where it seems obligatory to do what is possible to improve the level of competitiveness of the race.”

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