Following the many and contradicting rumours that have circulated over the past few weeks, Spanish fans have finally received the news they had been waiting for. This Friday an official announcement was made of the deal for the Barcelona Circuit to continue hosting the Spanish F1 Grand Prix at least until 2026. Formula One representatives have finally signed an agreement with the promoter and the Catalan authorities on a five-year contract extension beginning in May of the next season.
Over the last few campaigns, the contractual relationship between Formula 1 and the Montmelo track had been renewed on a yearly basis with the ensuing uncertainty regarding its position as a permanent Championship venue.
This new agreement, however, guarantees the venue’s medium-term future, although this hasn’t come without conditions. In order to enter the deal, racetrack officials have committed to undertake a thorough remodelling of the track and facilities, to both make it more aligned with the sustainable philosophy of Formula One and, obviously, to modernize it.
The prelude to this announcement came last Tuesday when the Government of Catalonia authorized the Circuit of Barcelona to proceed with the negotiations aimed at expanding its ties with both Formula 1 and MotoGP, with the latter also making an announcement this Friday.
The Catalan racetrack, which has featured in the Continental Circus World Championship since its inception in 1991, remains one of the twelve most important venues in the speciality. Over the last three decades, Barcelona has not missed a single appointment of the two-wheel competition, becoming a classic venue for the sport. Sure, two historic teams like Ferrari & McLaren will fight again in Spain.
“Formula 1 is pleased to announce that it has extended its contract with the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya for the Spanish Grand Prix until 2026. We want to thank the promoter and the authorities for their engagement and support and look forward to continuing to build our relationship in the years ahead”.
Stefano Domenicali, Formula 1 CEO and President had the following to say: “We are delighted to announce this deal with Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. I want to thank the promoter and the authorities for their enthusiasm and commitment to keeping Formula 1 in Barcelona, with improvements that will be made to the track and facilities, and continuing our long history together. The teams and drivers always look forward to racing at the circuit and visiting Barcelona, and the Spanish fans will continue to see their national heroes, Fernando Alonso and Carlos Sainz, up close.”
Roger Torrent, president of the Barcelona Circuit, has also expressed his satisfaction with the agreement: “We welcome the renewal of this contract, which includes a mutual commitment clause to help us turn Circuit Barcelona-Catalunya into a model and world benchmark of sustainability applied to this type of facility. We want the circuit to become an exponent of the green transformation and the adaptation of infrastructures to the demands of the climate emergency.”
Images of Spanish F1 Grand Prix; Circuit of Barcelona-Catalonia.