Azerbaijan extends Baku F1 deal until 2023

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Formula 1 and the Azerbaijan Grand Prix have agreed to a new four-year deal, running until 2023.

The event, which takes place on the streets of Baku, first appeared on the 2016 calendar and has quickly become a fan favourite because of the unpredictable and chaotic races it has produced.

However, last year, organisers activated a 2020 release clause in their initial 10-year contract citing the rising costs of hosting the event but now a new arrangement with Liberty Media has been reached.

“We are very pleased to have renewed this agreement which will see the Azerbaijan Grand Prix feature on the FIA Formula 1 world championship calendar for many years to come,” F1 CEO Chase Carey said.

"In just a short space of time, this race has become one of the most popular of the season, always producing closely fought and spectacular racing.

"The Republic of Azerbaijan provides a really excellent welcome to everyone in Formula 1 and the beautiful city of Baku is an amazing backdrop for the greatest motor racing show in the world."

 

Azad Rahimov, the country's sport and youth minister, also welcomed the contract extension and was very positive about the future of the street race.

“With these exciting opportunities in mind, extending our contract was never in question," he said. "We are delighted to stay in this wonderful sport for another five years at least.

"This is a truly proud day for all of us. This new agreement will allow our race to maximise its commercial revenues through increased fan-engagement activities and a new sponsorship approach.

"The last few years have been a dream come true for the people of Baku as we have seen our race weekend grow from a simple idea into one of the most dramatic and exciting race weekends in F1's history."

2019 is set to be a crucial year for shaping the future of the F1 schedule with Britain, Germany and Italy all out of contract. Whether they renew will an interesting signal for the intentions of Liberty with the promoters recently voicing concerns about the sport's leadership.

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