The FIA World Motor Sport Council has confirmed a 22-race calendar for next season, with New Jersey added to the provisional list. There have been a number of changes, with Bahrain now between Malaysia and China and the new Russian Grand Prix is scheduled to be a week before the Japanese Grand Prix.
Here is the calendar in full:
March 16 – Australia GP, Melbourne
March 30 – Malaysia GP, Sepang
April 6 – Bahrain GP, Sakhir
April 20 – China GP, Shanghai
April 27 – Korea GP, Yeongam (provisional)
May 11 – Spain GP, Barcelona
May 25 – Monaco GP, Monaco
June 1 – GP of America, New Jersey (provisional)
June 8 – Canada GP, Montreal
June 22 – Austria GP, Red Bull Ring
July 6 – Britain GP, Silverstone
July 20 – Germany GP, Hockenheim
July 27 – Hungary GP, Hungaroring
August 24 – Belgium GP, Spa-Francorchamps
September 7 – Italy GP, Monza
September 21 – Singapore GP, Marina Bay
October 5 – Russia, Sochi (subject to confirmation)
October 12- Japan GP, Suzuka
October 26 – Abu Dhabi, Yas Marina
November 9 – Mexico, Mexico City (provisional)
November 16 – USA, Circuit of the Americas
November 30 – Brazil, Interlagos
In my opinion, this calendar is much worse than the one proposed a few weeks ago. Firstly, it makes no sense to have the Malaysian and Bahrain Grands Prix back-to-back, it would make far more sense to schedule Australia and Malaysia in consecutive weeks.
Then we have the ludicrous triple-header consisting of Monaco, New Jersey and Canada. This is impractical and I cannot imagine that the teams will allow this to happen. I also don’t understand the logic of the ordering of the Singapore, Russian, Japanese and Abu Dhabi races. Logistically, it would make far more sense to have the Singapore and Japanese Grands Prix together, followed by Russia and Abu Dhabi.
Lastly, I think having 22 races in a season is too many, both for the fans and the teams. It would be a surprise if all 22 races happen next year – New Jersey, Mexico and Korea are all provisional, while the Russian GP is subject to confirmation – but it seems the wishes of the teams are being ignored in the pursuit of more money from race organisers.