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Melbourne F1 GP extended to 2035
Contract extension sees Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix remain at Albert Park
16 Jun 2022
By MATT BROGAN
THE Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix will remain at Albert Park until at least 2035, after the Victorian state government announced a 10-year contract extension this morning.
Speaking to the media, Victoria’s minister for tourism, sport and major events, Martin Pakula, said the contract extension was the longest since the marquee event moved to Melbourne in 1996 and would include Formula 2 and Formula 3 classes from 2023.
“The Australian Grand Prix has never been bigger, with more than 419,000 people flocking to Albert Park for this year’s race,” said Mr Pakula.
“We know how important this event is to our economy and that’s why we’ve delivered the longest extension for the race since it has been held in Melbourne.”
While Sydney did submit a rival bid for the event, GoAuto understands Melbourne ultimately won the contract as it represented a better commercial deal for organisers and has both an established location and experience to host the large-scale event.
Last year’s bid was Sydney’s third in 12 years and proposed a street-style circuit around the city’s iconic harbour.
Formula 1 president and CEO Stefano Domenicali said that Melbourne was the ideal location for the world-class race and that the event would remain on Melbourne’s calendar until mid-next decade.
“I am delighted to confirm that Melbourne and the Albert Park circuit will continue to be on the Formula 1 calendar until 2035,” Mr Domenicali was quoted as saying.
“The race has always been a favourite for the fans, drivers, and the teams, and Melbourne is an incredible and vibrant international city that is a perfect match for our sport.”
Motorsport Australia joined Mr Domenciali in welcoming the event’s extension. The organisation’s president, Andrew Fraser, said the news highlighted the strength of the event, the sport, and those who made it possible.
“The return of the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix in 2022 was a sight to behold, as sold-out crowds enjoyed what was a sporting spectacle,” said Mr Fraser.
“We congratulate both the Australian Grand Prix Corporation and the Victorian government on this new contract extension and look forward to playing a role in delivering what is the best Grand Prix on the calendar.
“This news is a vote of confidence in the hard work of so many people, including the 1000-plus officials who make the event possible each year. Our officials are the best in the world and their ongoing support, dedication and loyalty allow the enormous crowds to enjoy a safe and well-organised event.
“We look forward to the event’s return in 2023 and can’t wait to see Melbourne host the best drivers in the world well into the future.”
CEO of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation, Andrew Westacott, told media that today’s announcement was great for Melbourne and for the state of Victoria.
“This is a sensational announcement that is simply great for Melbourne and Victoria. It builds on our rich motorsport history as well as Melbourne’s love of big sporting events and provides aspiration to the next generation of Aussie racing stars.
"We’re proud of our strong relationship with Formula 1 and together we will grow the sport in Australia and the broader Asia-Pacific region. Everyone at the Australian Grand Prix Corporation looks forward to taking the Formula One Australian Grand Prix to new levels over the course of the next 13 years.”
The 2023 Formula 1 Grand Prix calendar is yet to be finalised. It is understood a South African round will join the calendar from next year, but that Australia may lose its traditional position as the season opener.
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