Subscribe

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe
Formula 1 Azerbaijan GP

Azerbaijan GP talks "positive" over F1 race deal extension

The Azerbaijan Grand Prix looks set to remain on the Formula 1 calendar beyond its current contract, as the race's organisers are in talks over a new deal.

A view of the track

The race, held on a high-speed course around the city of Baku, has been characterised by its action-packed races to become something of a modern classic in F1's current cast of circuits.

Having achieved a sell-out crowd for the first time in its history, the 2023 edition of the Baku race also features F1's first trials of its new sprint weekend format, featuring standalone qualifying for the shortened race on Saturday afternoon.

The circuit's current contract runs out this year, but talks with F1 look set to yield an extended stay for the venue overlooking the Caspian Sea.

"I can't really disclose the details of the negotiations - however, it's no secret that we are really looking forward to it being signed. It's going in a positive direction," said Baku City Circuit head of communications Turab Teymurov.

"We would love [to continue] because we understand the benefits coming from hosting the race. For instance, PricewaterhouseCoopers, they prepared a report - and according to that report, the benefits coming to Azerbaijan from hosting the first four races was more than $500 million.

"But it's not just that. There are also social benefits - a volunteering program, youth programs, corporate; social responsibility-wise, it's very, very profitable. It brings a lot of value.

"It doesn't matter for us whether it's three, six, or 10 [years], this year is very important. And if it's long term, we would like to be established, so the longer the better."

A view of the track

A view of the track

Photo by: Simon Galloway / Motorsport Images

Speaking about the position of the race on the calendar, Teymurov felt there were no doubts that the race could be flexible, given that it has been able to switch between April and June dates over its tenure on the schedule.

He added that, depending on the success of the sprint event at the circuit, the organisers would be open to hosting further sprint race weekends.

"Whether it's in June or April, we don't take it as a challenge because it's not challenging for us anymore.

Read Also:

"We have a very strong team, and despite the fact that it's hosted in the city centre, they have the right expertise and the right knowledge to be able to host such a big event - so it doesn't matter when.

"And in April, to be honest, it's windier in April - and I think wind adds more drama to the race.

"The sprint race has its own status with its new format, so let's see. It's going to prove whether it's as interesting, but if that proves to be effective, yeah, why not [continue]?"

Be part of the Autosport community

Join the conversation
Previous article Sainz: Saturday morning F1 qualifying without practice will be "intense"
Next article Live: F1 Azerbaijan GP commentary and updates – Qualifying

Top Comments

There are no comments at the moment. Would you like to write one?

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe