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F1 weekends could be shortened & 'unattractive' races dropped - Carey

Written by  Nov 16, 2018

Formula 1 CEO Chase Carey has offered an insight into Liberty Media's thinking regarding the future shape of the calendar.

Much has been said in the past week or so following the announcement of Vietnam's first Grand Prix in 2020 while at the same time questions have been placed over traditional venues such as Silverstone.

While Carey has always maintained there will be a balance between maintaining F1's heritage and expansion, a key message he is keen to stress is all races must be of value, something he feels slipped under Bernie Ecclestone.

"The promotion end of our business has been viewed as more mature than other revenue streams in F1," he said in a conference call which was quoted by Autosport.

"This perception was fuelled by a lack of investment or freshness by the prior regime in our events. Quite simply our events became stale, which led promoters to focus on costs as opposed to growth.

"Events today are more valuable than ever and we have a world class premium event," Carey stated. "We need to focus on maximising the value of our events and communicating that to host locations.

"We're encouraged that the message is getting through to both existing and potential new host cities."

It is anticipated under Liberty that an F1 season could consist of up to 25 races in the future, although the CEO did concede that expansion would be "modest".

Carey also warned, however, there would likely be some events axed which he felt didn't meet with his vision.

"Every race needs to be great for fans, and be an attractive business proposition," he said.

"The race we announced in Vietnam last week is a prime example of an event that will provide a great track for racing in a location that captures the world's imagination.

"We expect to replace a few existing races where we inherited unattractive agreements, with new events or agreements, that are better for racing and provide more value."

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The idea of expanding to 25 races isn't a popular one among many within F1 though, but ideas are being put forward which could make it more bearable.

Autosport revealed the possibility for most events to take place over just two days with only races that are likely to draw a Friday crowd including a day of testing which could replace the two in-season tests.

The current media day on a Thursday could also be reduced if not dropped with those commitments pushed on to a Friday in a bid to compact the weekend schedule.

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