Written by Staff Writer, CNN
The longest-running single-car race in motor sport, the Monaco Grand Prix, will be cut to three days, F1 CEO Chase Carey announced on Thursday.
He also confirmed that the May race will be held in the south of France this year and in 2020, leaving the Italian Grand Prix on the calendar in 2021.
Michele Monega, who was elected as head of the race on Thursday, will retain the sport’s governing body’s trust.
“The gentlemen who created the Monaco Grand Prix, Dennis Seton, known today as Seton 1 and Claire Williams, known today as Seton 2, had the foresight a few years ago that they would like to take one day away from the race. Why not take Monaco on Saturday? And they did it, and they created the F1 Grand Prix in Monaco,” Carey told reporters at a briefing in Monaco.
Powerless to stop it
Media outlets have speculated that Formula One could, perhaps, drop the European Grand Prix from the calendar after the 2020 event.
The Italian and French F1 Grand Prix have seen a significant decline in ticket sales, presenting a financial challenge for circuit management.
This has been an important for F1 since 2008, when Grand Prix rights holder Bernie Ecclestone began cutting costs — from the Italian and French rights holders.
In 2018 the Italian Grand Prix brought in $133 million compared to $147 million in 2017.
Williams’ father, is deeply unpopular at the circuit, having been implicated in the release of the 2013 Garcia report which examined the Brazilian’s influence on contracts.
“I would think that, potentially, there’s been a little bit of pressure from within to try and trim costs and give us some credit for bringing in money,” team principal Toto Wolff said in an interview with Sky.
Montoya ‘not in favour’
Meanwhile IndyCar driver Juan Pablo Montoya, who has won three Monaco races, said on Sirius XM F1 Radio that he was “not in favor” of Ferrari dropping the race.
“I like the idea of Monaco in F1 to be honest. It is always a unique atmosphere to have a Formula One car here in Monaco, and one of the exciting parts of the whole Monaco Grand Prix weekend, I think, is to have all the drivers here,” he said on Sirius XM F1 Radio.
“So in my heart, I have always liked the idea and personally, I hope it does stay for many years to come. It’s a unique Formula One event.”
“I would hope (the race) goes on. I would love for it to come back here,” Verstappen told reporters.
“It doesn’t affect us much because it’s a three-day race, so we don’t really need three days to be here. I think all the guys that are in the race on Friday, all weekend, enjoy the atmosphere. Hopefully this weekend will be even better because of that.”