F1 boss says new tracks must be good for racing
Formula 1 boss Chase Carey believes any new venue looking to join the calendar must produce good racing.
Carey’s comments come amid speculation that Vietnam is set to be added to the calendar from next year, while Miami is also currently in negotiations for a new event.
“There are a handful of things that are important for us,” said Carey.
“First, we want to make sure that it is great for a race. While we build all the things around it, it starts with having a track that provides a great race.
“Today, realistically, there are tracks that probably we need to work on that are not conducive to providing the most exciting, best racing. There are some that are fabulous.”
F1 next heads to Montreal, a circuit which has typically produced good racing, having last raced around the streets of Monaco where its processional racing has come in for criticism from Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton.
While Monaco is an anachronism, its marketing value ensuring its place on the grid, new circuits will need to demonstrate their ability to produce an exciting race, along with a host of other criteria the new F1 management has laid out in its attempts to promote and grow the sport.
“To start we want a track that will deliver a fabulous exciting race,” Carey explained.
“I think second, we want a site that is going to capture the world’s imagination.
“We are in the great cities around the world. We use the phrase destination cities, and we are in places where you want, when they (fans) look at it on TV, are excited about it, think it looks spectacular, and really capture people’s imagination. And if they go to it it is even more special.
“We want those magical cities and magical countries that really intrigue and fascinate the world.”
However, attentions are not focused solely on the circuits, Carey conceding that the cars themselves must be conducive to good racing.
Tweaks to the front wings for 2019 are designed to improve the ability for cars to follow closely, but that is only a band-aid solution to a larger issue.
“Overtaking is clearly an issue,” Carey admitted
“I think we know the steps we are taking for 2019 with the FIA are not a cure all, they are a step.
“The changes in 2021 will be more significant. We are more broadly addressing the aerodynamics.
“We don’t want to lose the aerodynamic aspects that make F1 racing so spectacular, but we do think we need to do things that enable overtaking to be a much more significant part of the sport.
“But it is not the only one. There are a lot of things we have underway that will bring a more competitive balance, more action on track, and in many ways more unpredictability.
“Predictability is not good in sports. You want the unexpected. You want the memorable moments that you didn’t see coming. You want the underdog winning. You want those things to happen.”
Traditionally, F1 has made its money through three primary sources of income, with race hosting fees making up around a third of that income.