Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (1) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB19 leads Carlos Sainz of Spain driving (55) the Ferrari SF-23 and the rest of the field into turn one at the start during the F1 Grand Prix of Spain at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on June 04, 2023 in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Peter Fox/Getty Images) // Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 News: Barcelona will offer more $ to sign new long-term F1 deal (10th Update)

(GMM) F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali says it remains possible he will agree to sign a new race contract with Barcelona.

On Wednesday, before this weekend’s Spanish GP, the Italian joined some 40,000 locals in the center of the city for a pre-weekend showcase event featuring Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz and Alpine’s Jack Doohan at the wheel of demo cars.

With Madrid joining the schedule from 2026, the city center event in Barcelona is part of a concerted push to convince Formula 1 that two grands prix in Spain is possible for the calendars of the future.

Domenicali admits he is impressed with what he saw on Wednesday.

Stefano Domenicali tours Barcelona Circuit

“I must say that (Circuit de Catalunya CEO) Oriol Sagrera’s work since he took over has been incredible and very professional,” he told Diario AS.

“I don’t like to say in public what is right and what is wrong, but the objective for Barcelona is to improve what is offered to the fans.

“But for now we are focused on the short-term on making this event fantastic. Afterwards, we will talk about the future at the appropriate time. That stays between us,” Domenicali added.

However, he freely admits that it is not ideal that Spain would have two separate races in both Madrid and Barcelona beyond 2026.

“On the one hand, you could say no,” said the F1 CEO. “On the other, you could say that there is potential to grow.

“With Fernando (Alonso) and Carlos, Spanish sponsors are very interested in our sport and we have reached a great agreement with DAZN for the television rights.

“The time will come to make the decision for the future. There is still the possibility,” he insisted. “So while it’s difficult, I don’t want to rule it out.

“It will be considered when the time comes.”

One possibility, Domenicali admits, is that Barcelona could be a candidate for F1’s apparent plans to annually alternate certain European races.

“Europe can maintain the current number of races, more or less,” he said, “and we will remain stable with 24 grand prix.

“The opportunity for Europe is to do race alternation in the coming years, because now we are a true world championship rather than a very European championship.”


June 6, 2024 

(GMM) Fans of the annual Spanish GP should not expect news about Barcelona’s future on the Formula 1 calendar this month.

With Madrid already signed up to take over the Spanish GP title from 2026, there remains great uncertainty about whether Barcelona can ink a similar deal.

The good news for Circuit de Catalunya supporters is that extensive renovation works at the venue – requested by F1 – are currently taking shape.

“I think we all know what Liberty Media is asking for and what F1 is asking for in order to keep the (Barcelona) grand prix,” said Oriol Sagrera, the new Circuit de Catalunya CEO.

“So it doesn’t have so much to do with the fact that there would be two grands prix in the same country, but rather with what the proposal is from the promoter.

“And we have equipped ourselves with the tools to offer the best proposal and the best experience of F1 at the global level,” he added. “And we are aware that we are competing at a global level, with markets that are doing an excellent job.

“Our ambition is to do it equally well or better than our competitors.”

As is often the case with expiring F1 contracts, negotiations and announcements typically occur during that event’s actual race weekend.

But Sagrera played down the chances of that occurring later in June, when the Formula 1 world will gather in Barcelona for the 2024 Spanish GP.

“We are very hopeful, we are very optimistic and the relationship with F1 is excellent,” he said, “as we have said many times. But it is not yet time to explain the details of the negotiations or to close this agreement.

“Therefore, for this grand prix, it is highly unlikely that there will be any announcement in this regard. But I trust that in the coming months or years, because we still have two and a half years ahead of us, that we will be able to explain that F1 is staying in Barcelona for much longer.”


May 15, 2024 

(GMM) Formula 1 is not yet ruling out a new race deal for Barcelona.

The future of the current Spanish GP venue has become particularly clouded since F1 agreed to transfer that official race title to Madrid for 2026 and beyond.

The Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona has an existing race deal for 2025 and 2026, but venue bosses admit that convincing F1 to host two races in Spain will be difficult.

At the announcement of a forthcoming F1 fan festival, circuit president Roger Torrent said: “The conversations to achieve the renewal are continuing and the relationship with F1 is very good. They are happy with our improvement works.

“But nothing has been signed, and there is nothing we can announce.”

Present at the announcement in Barcelona was Kate Hodgkinson, a marketing specialist who left the Premier League to join Formula 1 last year.

She confirmed that contract talks with Barcelona officials are taking place.

“We have to consider each and every aspect, and those discussions are being held,” Hodgkinson is quoted as saying by Spanish newspapers. “But no decision has been made at this time.”

She added: “The Spanish market is very important for F1. We have two drivers in Fernando (Alonso) and Carlos (Sainz) who reinforce the link between the fans and Formula 1.”

However, she admitted that Madrid already having the Spanish GP deal for 2026 and beyond is a complication for Barcelona.

“The conversations are still on the table with Barcelona in terms of looking at the two cities,” she said. “But as you can imagine, there are many requests for races from all around the world, considering what F1 can offer on and off the track.

“I think it’s very important to highlight that Formula 1 brings a lot to the Spanish market. We have always maintained the possibility of having a race in Barcelona as well as Madrid.

“The arrival of Madrid is very important to gain even more fans and we are going to continue the conversations with Barcelona,” Hodgkinson added.


April 25, 2024 

(GMM) A new deal to keep Formula 1 in Barcelona beyond 2026, when Madrid is taking over the official Spanish GP moniker, is “just as close” as it was a few months ago.

That’s the news from the mouth of Oriol Sagrera, the new CEO of the Circuit de Catalunya – home of the Spanish GP since the early 90s.

“We still have a lot of room to finalize the details of the renewal,” he told Spanish publications.

His comments come as the circuit reveals a deal with Fira de Barcelona – the city’s trade fair institution. A new company, Fira Circuit, is now in charge of managing activities at the historic Formula 1 track for the next 20 years.

Fira de Barcelona head Constanti Serrallonga played down the notion that the deal could fall apart if F1 contract negotiations with Liberty Media fail.

“Not at all,” he said. “The scenario is that Fira can contribute to improving the activity of the circuit beyond Formula 1, and this makes sense in any scenario.

“The agreement is for 20 years, regardless of whether the future is with or without F1, although we hope to have F1 for many years.”


April 10, 2024 

(GMM) Barcelona is not giving up on Formula 1, despite Madrid’s high profile new long time deal to start hosting the official Spanish GP from 2026.

F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali is not ruling out a scenario in which Madrid and Barcelona, the sport’s traditional Spanish venue since the early 90s, could co-exist in the future.

And that’s precisely what Roger Torrent, the minister of business and work in Catalonia, says he is working on.

Also serving as president of the Circuit de Catalunya at this critical time in its F1 history, Torrent told the local TV3 broadcaster that talks with Formula 1 are “well focused and continue to move forward”.

Torrent is confident this year’s Spanish GP will be “the best that has ever been organized in Catalonia,” which he says will contribute “decisively” to the F1 contract talks.

“The circuit is undertaking spectacular works,” he explained, “with a very important investment to adapt it to the 21st century and turn it into the best permanent track in the world.

“When we renewed for five years, until 2026, it allowed us to address a strategic plan and the renovation of the facilities. We still have three of those five grands prix to go and we are convinced that the next one in June will be the best in the history of the circuit”.

He said the venue will work with local authorities and institutions so that F1 can remain “for many more years in Barcelona”.

“Both Formula 1 and MotoGP are happy with the involvement of Catalonia and Barcelona in the celebration of their grands prix,” Torrent added.


March 15, 2024 

(GMM) The Circuit de Catalunya is spending no less than 50 million euros to convince Formula 1 to stay in Barcelona.

It was recently announced that F1 will head to a rival project in Madrid from 2026 – the final year in Barcelona’s current contract.

Formula 1 is not ruling out a new deal with Barcelona, but it would probably only be an annually alternating arrangement with another European circuit.

Madrid, however, appears to be optimistic about becoming F1’s sole Spanish race from 2027 onwards.

“The optimism is ours,” the Circuit de Catalunya’s track director Josep Lluis Santamaria insisted to Spanish media this week.

The reporters were at the circuit to check out progress on renovation works that are currently underway – with EUR 50m slated to be spent by 2026.

“For MotoGP we will have finished everything on the terrace, the pit building, the control power and almost the entire rooftop structure, which will be finished for F1,” he said, referring to the MotoGP race in late May, and F1’s Spanish GP about a month later.

The innovative ‘Rooftop’ structure straddles the track on the back straight, and is a bold gamble by Barcelona aimed at convincing F1 to keep the circuit on the calendar in 2027 and beyond.

“There are countries that have up to three grands prix, like the United States,” Santamaria insisted. “Why can’t you have two in Spain?

“(Stefano) Domenicalli has already said that. Just like in Italy as well. We are working on it and we are sure that Formula 1 will stay here for many years.

“The contacts we have (with F1) are continuous,” he continued. “Every week we have meetings. Meetings with commercial teams, with the promotion team. What we can already show this year is the quality of the work we have done.”

Santamaria says some of the talks with F1 and its CEO Domenicali have been taking place in the wake of the Madrid GP announcement.

“F1 came here,” he confirmed. “And we had a meeting in London explaining the projects. That was last month.

“Last week, the F1 engineering team came and they stood still because of how quickly we are moving forward.”

Santamaria says one of F1’s demand is that the city of Barcelona needs to get more involved with promoting festival-like events to promote the race.

“You will soon have information on what will be done in the city,” he revealed. “Last year there were already activities and this year there will be too.

“It is true that with the changes in government of the Barcelona council, relations have improved a lot and allow us to hold joint events with the city.”


January 27, 2024 

Barcelona is currently paying a Hosting fee of $25 million per year.  Word on the street is that Barcelona wants to renew its F1 contract six years – through the 2032 season. Their current contract expires in after the 2026 race.

They would be willing to up their annual fee by $10 million to $35 million in fees per season.

It could coexist with Madrid on the calendar and be called either:

  1. Barcelona GP
  2. Catalonia GP
  3. European GP

January 25, 2024 

(GMM) Barcelona’s city council is open to spending more money if it rescues its embattled Formula 1 race

As was predicted, F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali on Tuesday was in the Spanish capital to announce a ten-year deal for an annual Formula 1 race in the city of Madrid.

The deal starts in 2026 – the year after the contract with Spain’s existing grand prix at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona expires.

But Domenicali is not ruling out a new deal for Barcelona.

“First of all, Oriol Sagrera is an incredible person,” he said, referring to the new boss of the Barcelona track – F1’s Spanish home since 1991.

“We are working to look into the future and we will see,” Domenicali added. “We will keep you updated. Two circuits in Spain on the same calendar?

“Why not?” the Italian said.

The new Madrid race, however, is completely privately funded – while Barcelona relies on a certain amount of institutional and government funding.

So as the Madrid news broke, the Barcelona city council reacted by insisting it will make extra efforts to keep a second Spanish race on the calendar. Believe it? Try your hand at Australian Betting.

“We maintain our commitment to the Circuit de Catalunya and have made clear our political, institutional and economic support throughout the negotiations, even expressing our willingness to increase the current financial contribution to guarantee the competitiveness of the Montmelo facilities,” the council said.

Barcelona was contributing EUR 3 million euros per year in 2017, but in recent years that funding has halved.

The Generalitat de Catalonia – the regional government – revealed on Tuesday that it “maintains an excellent relationship with F1”, while the Catalan department of business said “there is a lot of time ahead” before 2026.

And Spain’s sports minister, Pilar Alegria, met with Domenicali after Tuesday’s announcement and conveyed the government’s interest in “working towards the concurrence of two grands prix in our country”.

She explained: “That has already happened in previous years in Spain as well as other countries such as Italy, Germany and the United States.”

As for the Madrid mayor Jose Luis Martinez-Almeida, he said on Tuesday: “This is not a grand prix of Madrid against Catalonia or against Barcelona.

“What interests me is that Madrid has a grand prix, not that someone else stops having one,” he told Antena 3.

F1 CEO Domenicali agrees: “I remember the first meeting with (Ifema Madrid president) Jose Vicente and he said Madrid wanted to propose a contract complementary to what F1 does in Barcelona.

“The fact that we are in Madrid does not exclude that we can stay in Barcelona for the future.”

Current F1 Event Statistics with British GP Update

Rnd 2024 Date Event Circuit Location Hosting Fee ($) Contract Good Thru 2023 3-Day Attendance Length (km) Length (Miles) Turns Laps
1 March 2 Bahrain Grand Prix Bahrain International Circuit Sakhir 45 million 2036 99,500 5.412 3.363 15 57
2 March 9 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Jeddah Street Circuit Jeddah 55 million 2030 150,000 6.175 3.837 27 50
3 March 24 Australian Grand Prix Albert Park Circuit Melbourne 40 million 2035 444,631 5.279 3.280 16 58
4 April 7 Japanese Grand Prix Suzuka International Racing Course Suzuka 50 million 2029 222,000 5.807 3.608 18 53
5 April 21 Chinese GP Shanghai Intl Circuit Shanghai 50 million 2025 No Race 5.451 3.387 16 56
6 May 7 Miami Grand Prix Miami International Autodrome Miami Collaboration
Assume $45M
2031 270,491 5.410 3.362 19 57
7 May 19 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix Imola Imola 20 million 2025 No Race 4.909 3.050 21 66
8 May 26 Monaco Grand Prix Circuit de Monaco Monte Carlo 20 million 2025 200,000 3.340 2.075 19 78
9 June 9 Canadian Grand Prix Circuit Gilles Villeneuve 14 turns Montreal 30 million 2031 345,000 4.361 2.710 14 70
10 June23 Spanish Grand Prix Circuit de Barcelona Montmeló 25 million 2026 284,066 4.655 2.892 16 66
11 June 30 Austrian Grand Prix Red Bull Ring Spielberg 25 million 2030 304,000 4.326 2.688 10 71
12 July 7 British Grand Prix Silverstone Circuit Silverstone 40 million 2034 480,000 5.891 3.660 18 52
13 July 21 Hungarian Grand Prix Hungaroring Mogyoród 40 million 2032 303,000 4.381 2.722 14 70
14 July 28 Belgian Grand Prix Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps Stavelot 25 million 2025 380,000 7.004 4.352 19 44
15 August 25 Dutch Grand Prix Circuit Zandvoort Zandvoort 32 million 2025 305,000 4.459 2.771 14 72
16 September 1 Italian Grand Prix Autodromo Nazionale di Monza Monza 25 million 2025 304,135 5.793 3.600 17 53
17 September 15 Azerbaijan Grand Prix Baku City Circuit Baku 55 million 2026 95,000 6.003 3.730 20 51
18 September 22 Singapore Grand Prix Marina Bay Street Circuit Singapore 35 million 2028 264,108 5.063 3.146 23 61
19 October 20 United States Grand Prix Circuit of the Americas Austin 25 million 2026 432,000 5.513 3.426 20 56
20 October 27 Mexico City Grand Prix Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez Mexico City 25 million 2025 400,639 4.304 2.674 17 71
21 November 3 Sao Paulo Grand Prix Autódromo José Carlos Pace São Paulo 30 million 2030 267,000 4.309 2.677 15 71
22 November 23 Las Vegas Grand Prix Las Vegas Street Circuit Las Vegas Owned by F1
Assume $45M
2033 315,000 6.120 3.803 17 50
23 December 1 Qatar Grand Prix Losail International Circuit Losail 55 million 2032 120,000 5.380 3.343 16 57
24 December 8 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi 40 million 2030 165,000 5.554 3.451 21 55
   w/o Madrid  $877 million  6,150,570 Averages  3.234 mi.  18  60
25 TBD Spanish GP IFEMA Madrid Circuit Madrid 65 million 2035 330,000 5.474 3.401 20 56
   w/Madrid  $942 million 6,480,570 Averages  3.240 mi.  18  60

 


January 23, 2024 

Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali says Barcelona may still have a future place on the calendar, despite the announcement that the Spanish Grand Prix will move to Madrid in 2026.

How? Pay a large new sanction fee

“For the avoidance of doubt and to clarify here, the fact we are in Madrid is not excluding the fact we could stay in Barcelona for the future,” Domenicali told the F1 website.

“Looking ahead, there are discussions in place to see if we can really extend our collaboration with Barcelona, with whom we have a very good relationship, for the future.”

“Spain was a market that just a couple of years ago, was not in the center of our eyes,” he said.

“Now it is very important. We signed a new deal with Spanish broadcaster DAZN until at least the end of 2026.

“It’s a nice problem to have, to have multiple cities – some in the same country – wanting to host a grand prix.

“It shows the value of our proposition. But we need to keep focused on the reason for our success, and make sure we aren’t complacent.”

“It’s great news for F1 as it shows once again that there is strong appetite around the world for our sport,” he said.

“It shows that at a moment where Europe is perceived to be a place that is not ready to invest in our sport, Madrid and others are showing it is.

“They have presented a fascinating project, one that will be built in the next couple of years and a project that is considering the fans and their whole experience, from their travel to the whole event experience.

“The proposition we received from the promoter was great. Since the first day, it has been an open discussion of what this event can be.”

“I’m very pleased that it’s a deal that takes us to 2035 – it’s a long time,” he said. “This is the objective as F1, with either new or more established promoters.

“It allows everyone involved to plan the future and invest in the future as it is a guarantee for the promoter, for our partners, for our teams and for our sport. It gives everyone long-term visibility.

“If you look at the past, the renewals were two years, three years or five years maximum. Now all our new deals are going in the direction of being very long. And if they are short, there is a reason.”


January 22, 2024 

(GMM) Barcelona is determined to stay on the Formula 1 calendar, even if a second grand prix in Spain is set to be imminently announced for Madrid.

Photos of the stage for the announcement of a Madrid GP are now circulating online ahead of Tuesday’s event, which will be attended by F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali.

Madrid GP Stage
Madrid GP Stage

But what is not known is how Formula 1’s latest city race will affect the existing long-time Spanish GP host in Barcelona, at the Circuit de Catalunya.

Pere Aragones, the president of the government of Catalonia, insists he is not overly worried.

ere Aragones, the president of the government of Catalonia
Pere Aragones, the president of the government of Catalonia

“We are working with Formula 1,” he told Catalunya Radio. “The relationship is good.

“We are working to have another contract with which to continue for a few more years. We are working on that and making positive progress and will announce it when we have it signed.”

Barcelona has held the Spanish GP at the same permanent circuit since 1991, but it is now rumored that Madrid could either replace the event or the two hosts will alternate annually.

President Aragones insists he feels no pressure to accelerate the F1 talks.

“To defend the interests of Catalonia, we set the rhythms, the dynamics and the criteria,” he said. “The future of F1 in Catalonia will depend on the Barcelona-Catalunya circuit and on F1 itself. Not on anyone else.”

He would not be drawn on whether the new Madrid GP is the death knell for Barcelona’s event.

“If there can be grands prix in other places is a question for F1, not for us,” said Aragones. “This year we will have a grand prix and from 2026 we are working to ensure the continuity of the grand prix held in Catalonia.

“After that, F1 will say what happens in other places.”

Madrid’s new F1 race will take place in and around the Ifema event facilities near the airport, with a circuit that is rumored to include a heavily banked corner and a unique indoor section.


July 26, 2023 

Circuit de Barcelona Catalunya wants to renew its F1 contract until 2036, according to reports from Spanish news outlets.

The current contract ends in 2025 to possibly make way for the Madrid Grand Prix but in Barcelona they have assured that they want to certainly extend the contract for many more years to come.

The Circuit de Barcelona Catalunya has a contract with F1 until 2026 included to celebrate the Spanish Grand Prix and not only will it fulfill until the last year, but it is in talks with Liberty Media and Stefano Domenicaii to expand this link.

As MARCA has learned, Josep Lluis Santamariía, director of the Circuit and his management team intend to renew for an extra decade on the current contract, through 2036. The Spanish GP has been held uninterruptedly in Montmeló since 1991.

Liberty Media is looking to lock in long-term deals to ensure positive cash flow for many years to come.

Hungary recently renewed his weekend until 2032, and before that Australia until 2035.

But for Barcelona the threat of the Spanish GP moving to Madrid is real. We have had 11 updates to our rumor regarding Madrid landing an F1 race.

Could Spain support two F1 races?

Organizers of a grand prix in Madrid claim they will soon be signing a race contract with Formula 1.

In recent months, rumors have ramped up about a potential rival bid for the existing Spanish GP in Barcelona.

“I just can say that I will do my maximum and just to ensure that there’s still a Spanish GP, independently of where,” the Spaniard added.

On Thursday, the president of Ifema, the entity in charge of the organization of major events in Madrid, claimed that a race deal is close.

“We have a confidentiality agreement and I cannot reveal when we are going to have the contract,” said Ifema president Jose Vicente de los Mozos.

“But I know when we are going to sign it and when we are going to announce it,” he added.

“I speak with Stefano Domenicali and there is mutual trust. We are going to do things together.”

As for whether a new event in Madrid would oust Barcelona from the calendar, de los Mozos answered: “If in the end there are two, as there was in the past, I’m delighted.

“But I speak and work for Madrid.”

Madrid appears to be on the fast track to the Formula 1 calendar, and it has already registered the Madrid Grand Prix trademark.

During a recent Red Bull Showrun in Madrid, Sergio Perez gave even more fuel to rumors the Spanish capital is poised to ink a race deal with F1 by demonstrating two Sebastian Vettel title-winning Red Bull cars on the Madrid streets in front of 85,000 fans.

“Although I’m not at home,” the Mexican told local Spanish media, “I feel as if I am.

Madrid deserves a Formula 1 race,” Perez declared.

Madrid, whose event would be a street race, would apparently replace rather than complement the existing Spanish GP at Barcelona.

“Street races are special,” said Perez, “because there is a different atmosphere in each city.

“This is a great city,” he added in Madrid, “and the atmosphere would be fantastic.

“I’m also very good at these types of circuits,” Perez smiled.

Sergio "Checo" Perez performs during Red Bull Showrun in Madrid, Spain
Sergio “Checo” Perez performs during Red Bull Showrun in Madrid, Spain on 15 July 2023. // Gianfranco Tripodo / Red Bull Content Pool
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