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Barcelona chiefs confident €50m revamp will help secure fresh F1 deal

The organisers of Barcelona's Formula 1 race are confident a €50m renovation plan can help the event stay on the calendar beyond 2026 despite the Spanish Grand Prix's move to Madrid.

Circuit De Barcelona Catalunya renovation

Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya

Earlier this month, F1 announced the Spanish GP would move from Barcelona, where it had been held continuously since 1991, to a new hybrid street circuit at the IFEMA complex in Madrid from 2026 onwards.
Barcelona's current deal expires after 2026, meaning that season will see two races in Spain for the first time since the short-lived Valencia Grand Prix between 2008 and 2012.
F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali was keen to stress that F1's move to Madrid didn't necessarily have to spell the end for Barcelona. But with spots on the calendar in high demand, it seems unlikely that Barcelona's event will be able to co-exist with Madrid beyond its current terms.
Nevertheless, Barcelona's chiefs are bullish about their event's future, hoping the completion of a 50m euro renovation project will help get a new deal across the line.
In recent years the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya has received criticism for its dated facilities and mediocre fan experience. The 2022 edition was marred by logistical issues, which prompted an apology from the promoters and a demand from F1 to improve its access problems.
In an informal press meeting attended by Autosport, circuit and Catalan government officials were optimistic that the large-scale renovation at Montmelo will alleviate some of those crowd control issues and will strengthen Barcelona's claim on a grand prix slot.
Oscar Piastri, McLaren MCL60, Nyck de Vries, AlphaTauri AT04

Photo by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

Oscar Piastri, McLaren MCL60, Nyck de Vries, AlphaTauri AT04

The project, which started over two years ago and is expected to be completed before this year's Spanish Grand Prix in June, includes a remodelling of the pit complex and the construction of a new covered pit building terrace to house the Paddock Club.
It also features a new control tower and a walkway across the back straight that will connect the paddock with the stadium area and will house a large hospitality area.
With the Spanish Grand Prix moniker moving to Madrid, Barcelona officials stopped short of confirming the new name for their 2026 F1 race, but Barcelona GP, Catalan GP and European GP are said to be the most plausible options.
For 2027 and beyond Barcelona will face fierce competition for a slot on F1's rammed 24-race calendar, with recent reports suggesting Mercedes sponsor Petronas is keen on reviving Kuala Lumpur's Malaysian Grand Prix.

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