F1: Boullier unsure about new French GP contract

(GMM) Eric Boullier says he cannot say whether Paul Ricard will agree a new contract with Formula 1.

While the circuit hosted a thrilling French GP on Sunday, the event’s managing director Eric Boullier admitted the matter of selling more tickets to the public is an issue that needs addressing.

“We have a contract until 2022,” the former McLaren boss told Ouest-France.

“When we look at other European grands prix, it takes 4-5 years for them to find their audience. So with 2020 cancelled and 2021 under these covid conditions, we will work hard to find our public and define the right profile of the French spectator.

“It’s a challenge to make sure that everyone is here,” said Boullier, who was earlier reportedly pushing for a race fee reduction to offset the limited crowd of just 15,000 per day in 2021.

Eric Boullier

The Frenchman admits he met with F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali over the course of the race weekend.

“Yes, there were a few visits, a few contacts made,” he smiled. “Nothing goes unnoticed in Formula 1!

“For a renewal, I don’t have an opinion until I sit down around a table to have real discussions.

“But this weekend, we showed that there can be a spectacle when Formula 1, technically speaking, allows for it.

“This 2021 edition was a special grand prix with health restrictions, so we will have to have a full-blown grand prix in order to speak of a complete success.

“But for now, we have to admit that a trouble-free weekend is good and after two difficult years, this is encouraging,” said Boullier.