Max Verstappen makes plea to Formula 1 ahead of 2022 Belgian Grand Prix

The future of the Belgian Grand Prix hangs in the balance after this year.

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen has warned Formula 1 that they cannot do away with tracks like Spa Francorchamps amid worldwide interest in hosting races.

Vegas is set to join Austin and Miami on the calendar next year, expanding American interest to three races, two of them being held on street circuits if Miami is to be counted as such.

Provided Monaco keeps its place for 2023, there will be seven street circuits on the calendar next season, although the Principality is also under threat.

READ: Netflix accused of taking Lewis Hamilton footage out of context to stir up FIA controversy

In years to come, it is possible that the likes of Silverstone and Monza, who both have deals until 2024, will also drop off, and this is all due to an influx of new demographics.

The titanic title tussle between Verstappen and Sir Lewis Hamilton brought in a lot of interest in around the globe, to the point that Red Bull boss Christian Horner indicated that the sport is more investible than ever right now.

Drive to Survive has generated a greater audience too, particularly in America, which is a large part of the reason that three races are to be hosted there from 2023.

The money that the new venues have is much greater than that of humble tracks like Spa, which has been on the calendar since the very beginning of the championship in 1950.

It is very much part of the foundations of F1, so it would be upsetting for Verstappen, who always gets a lot of Dutch support at Spa, to see the iconic racetrack abandoned.

Article continues below

“It’s sad, first of all, [Spa] is my favourite track and I think it is just a great track to drive,” he told

“I understand that to get there compared to other tracks it’s probably a little more difficult sometimes with the traffic, but it’s a very iconic track.”

What the 24-year-old does not want is a calendar full of street circuits; he wants there to be some character on the tracks the sport visits.

READ: Christian Horner happy to be battling Ferrari instead of Mercedes

“I don’t want to see myself in 2028 or whatever driving on street circuit close to the city just for the fan engagement, because you need these kind of iconic tracks on the calendar,” added Verstappen.

“Of course, I understand that everyone wants to make money, but there’s also a limit to that because it’s important to keep these really cool circuits on the calendar instead of just driving on street circuits.

“I think F1 cars are not designed for [street tracks] anyway.”

At the moment, there is a chance that the upcoming Belgian Grand Prix at the end of August could be the last one for some time if a renewal cannot be agreed upon.

The Kyalami circuit in South Africa has been linked with a return to F1, which could potentially knock Spa off the list of venues.