Formula 1 to remove Spa from 2023 calendar

The Belgian Grand Prix has been on the calendar since 1950, missing only six seasons in the time since.

Spa Francorchamps is expected to lose its place on the Formula 1 calendar in 2023 due to the influx of new and returning venues.

F1’s stock has risen exponentially in recent years, partly because of the introduction of the Netflix docuseries Drive to Survive, so interest in the pinnacle of motorsport, particularly in America, is higher than ever.

Red Bull boss Christian Horner indicated over the winter than the sport is more investible that ever now after the titanic battle between Max Verstappen and Sir Lewis Hamilton, as Red Bull put an end to the total dominance of the Silver Arrows for the previous seven seasons.

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The result of the added interest is that many venues are now coming forward asking for a race, and a lot of those prospective race promoters have one thing that a lot of classis circuits do not – a back pocket with money falling out of it.

Miami became a venue for a race this season, while Vegas is set to become a host for the third time in 2023, while South Africa is set to make a return next year too at the iconic Kyalami circuit.

There is reportedly only going to be room for eight European races on the 24-race calendar next year, with Paul Ricard in France almost certainly doomed to fall off the schedule.

The French Grand Prix does not have a contract for next year, and neither does Spa, while negotiations to extend the Monaco Grand Prix for at least one more year are still thought to be ongoing.

Silverstone and Monza, meanwhile, have deals until at least 2024 but, with Saudi Arabia reportedly willing to dish out for two races, and Colombia allegedly keen to host the Caribbean Grand Prix, the founding racetracks of the world championship look at real threat of disappearing.

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The Austrian Grand Prix does not have a deal in place for 2023 either but, due to its ownership by Red Bull, there is little risk of that race being scrapped, according to Algemeen Dagblad writer Jo Bossuyt.

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The Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in Imola is set to join Monza, Silverstone, Hungary, Monaco, Austria, Spain and Zandvoort on the calendar as the European races next year.

Azerbaijan is generally considered to be part of Southwest Asia rather than Europe, and the race in Baku also has a deal for next year.