Bustling 21-race F1 calendar revealed for 2018

Jawad Yaqub Roar Guru

By , Jawad Yaqub is a Roar Guru

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    Lewis Hamilton is in pole position coming into the Azerbaijan Grand Prix (Image supplied by AMG Petronas Motorsport).

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    We’re not even halfway through the 2017 Formula One world championship, though some intrigue has shifted towards next year, with the provisional calendar being released by the FIA.

    Formula One will return to a bustling 21-race schedule in 2018, with the long-awaited return of the French Grand Prix, as well as the bi-yearly German event. The Malaysian Grand Prix, as already documented on this column is the only omission from the current roster.

    For the first time in the sport’s history also, there will be an unprecedented triple-header, spanning the French, Austrian and British Grands Prix, right in the middle of the championship.

    This marathon of races will present the teams with a daunting challenge, both logistically and financially – as they get set to cover 1100km across three weeks in Europe.

    Formula One’s commercial CEO Chase Carey said upon the release of the calendar “We wanted to finalise next season’s calendar early, so that all our stakeholders would have more time to prepare and we have managed it, thanks in part through working closely with the FIA,”

    “The number of races has increased by one compared to the current season. We received numerous requests from those wishing to host a Formula OneGrand Prix but we wanted the existing promoters to feel that we are putting all our efforts into ensuring that each race is a special event, so that the fans, our most important stakeholders, can enjoy a unique and unforgettable experience.

    “If we can do that, then the entire Formula Onefamily will reap the benefit.”

    FIA president Jean Todt in addition stated “Alongside our partners in Formula One and across the FIA’s major championships we have been working hard in recent months to achieve greater harmony among the various sporting calendars and reaching an early agreement on the 2018 Formula One schedule is part of this ongoing process.

    “The FIA would also like to welcome back the French and German Grands Prix to the calendar, as both have a long and rich tradition in the sport.

    “In that regard the FIA is particularly pleased that Formula Onewill once again return to France, the historic home of grand prix racing, and to the Circuit Paul Ricard, which last hosted the event in 1990.”

    The season will see it’s curtains raised at the traditional Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne on March 25, while the conclusion of the championship will once again be upon the marinas of Abu Dhabi on November 25.

    Daniel Ricciardo of Australia and Red Bull Racing, Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP and Max Verstappen

    (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

    Azerbaijan sees its race moved from its current June slot, up into April following the third round of the season in Bahrain. Baku replaces the Russian Grand Prix as the fourth race of 2018, as the former transitions in between the Singapore and Japanese races.

    Despite the desire of the new Formula One commercial owners in Liberty Media, to avoid calendar clashes with other high-profile motorsport events, the May 27 date for the jewel-in-the-crown Monaco Grand Prix looks set to conflict with the Indy 500 once again.

    The all-electric Formula E series also sees several of its tail-ending dates in 2018 clash with the European leg of the Formula One season.

    France’s return to the sport meanwhile, will take place on June 24, which is the weekend following the 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance spectacle, bringing forth plenty of world class motorsport into that region at that time.

    What do we make of the 2018 calendar then Roarers? Are we happy with the structure? Or are the clashes once again an issue? Feel free to share your thoughts below.

    March 25 – Australian Grand Prix – Albert Park
    April 8 – Chinese Grand Prix – Shanghai International Circuit
    April 15 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit
    April 29 – Azerbaijan Grand Prix – Baku Street Circuit
    May 13 – Spanish Grand Prix – Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya
    May 27 – Monaco Grand Prix – Monaco
    June 10 – Canadian Grand Prix – Circuit Gilles Villeneuve
    June 24 – French Grand Prix – Circuit Paul Ricard
    July 1 – Austrian Grand Prix – Red Bull Ring
    July 8 – British Grand Prix – Silverstone
    July 22 – German Grand Prix – Hockenheim
    July 29 – Hungarian Grand Prix – Hungaroring
    August 26 – Belgian Grand Prix – Spa-Francorchamps
    September 2 – Italian Grand Prix – Autodromo Nazionale Monza
    September 16 – Singapore Grand Prix – Marina Bay
    September 30 – Russian Grand Prix – Sochi International Circuit
    October 7 – Japanese Grand Prix – Suzuka
    October 21 – United States Grand Prix – Circuit of the Americas
    October 28 – Mexican Grand Prix – Autodromó Hermanos Rodríguez
    November 11 – Brazilian Grand Prix – Autodromó José Carlos Pace
    November 25 – Abu Dhabi Grand Prix – Yas Marina Circuit

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