Portimao paying ‘much lower’ price for F1 race

(GMM) Portimao is paying a “much lower” price for joining the Formula 1 calendar in 2020.

The Portuguese circuit, set to host its first ever grand prix next weekend, is one of several venues drafted in this year to fill the calendar gaps amid the corona crisis.

“Each race in Europe costs EUR 30-50 million, but our numbers, which are under contract and not public, are much lower,” said Paulo Pinheiro, the race promoter.

Liberty Media is picking up the tab this year to keep the sport’s wheels turning, but F1 CEO Chase Carey insists next year’s race schedule will hopefully be “closer to normal”.

However, Pinheiro is still confident the Portuguese circuit can have a future in Formula 1.

“There are many circuits with contracts, but the possibility of introducing a rotation of races allows us to dream,” he told the Portuguese source A Bola.

Paulo Pinheiro, the race promoter

“Our circuit is attractive and the grand prix is generating a lot of expectations,” Pinheiro added.

“We are complying with the schedule and the specifications, which are complex and demanding. We have replaced the asphalt and installed new signage, bridges and kilometers of cables,” he smiled.

“Our team is only 55 people, but we are highly motivated to fulfil the dream of a lifetime.”