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The Valencia Street Circuit, Photo by Rachel H

From next year Spain will as expected only have one race each year with the Grand Prix to alternate between the Circuit De Catalunya and Valencia Street Circuit, at the same time that this may seem like bad news for Spanish F1 fans it should see the Spanish Grand Prix remain on the calendar until at least 2019.

 

We reported earlier in the year how the Governments of Catalunya and Valencia were both struggling with the costs of the races and to justify the amount of taxpayers money was being spent on these events while public services were being cut. At the same time both governments know the prestige and spotlight that the races bring to their cities and the surrounding area not to mention the number of tourists that the races bring in. It is hoped numbers should be stronger now for each race with only one each year, thereby boosting profits and cutting the amount that the governments have to cover.

 

The President of Catalunya Artur Mas and president of Valenica Alberto Fabra have as such now agreed a new arrangement and the organisers and promoters of the events are, according to Spanish papers Marca and Diario Sport, in full agreement.

 

Circuit de catalunya: F1 Circuit Barcelona the pitlane

Circuit de Catalunya, Photo by Salva Mendez

Final approval needs to come from Bernie Ecclestone himself now but he was the first one to mention the idea of an alternating race and he has been looking for ways to cut the number of European races in order to bring in new races in places such as Argentina and Mexico, who seem set to join the calendar in the near future.

 

The two Spanish races will now both be called the Spanish Grand Prix (with the European Grand Prix name to disappear again) but will it is understood each have their own contracts with it most likely that current contracts will simply be amended. According to Newspaper Marca Barcelona will be host the 2013 Spanish Grand Prix and then every other year with Valenica to host the 2014 grand prix and then every other year.

 

This of course is a similar setup to that for the German Grand Prix which alternates between the Hockenheimring and Nurburgring and it is expected that should the French Grand Prix return it would alternate with another race, possibly the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa.