Vietnamese Grand Prix Added To 2020 F1 Calendar

Carrie Guzman
November 10, 2018

Bratches has stressed the importance of promoting F1 to new audiences in unique venues and speaking ahead of Brazilian Grand Prix, he admits historic race tracks are "not immutable".

Hanoi, confirmed as host on Wednesday, was far from an obvious choice: it's not the richest city in the region, and motorsports remain on the fringe in the football-mad nation.

He insisted F1 had other options for a second American race.

Bratches said the sport valued and wanted to keep the "heritage races" - such as Silverstone, Spa and Monza - and recognised their importance to fans.

When asked if he had an ideal limit in his mind, he said: "Not really".

For Mercedes to be denied at Sao Paulo's atmospheric Interlagos circuit, Ferrari will have to score 13 points more than Mercedes - a feat they have managed only twice in 19 races so far in 2018.

"The first year here was quite hard, but it has been improving over time", he said.

Success also hinges on a passionate motorsports culture that does not yet exist in Vietnam, where most people drive motorbikes instead of cars.

Earlier this week F1's commercial managing director Sean Bratches hinted that the race could move away from Silverstone, its permanent home since 1987 and a regular F1 venue throughout the championship's history. The track has taken inspiration from several renowned circuits across the globe including the Nurburgring, Silverstone, the Monaco street circuit, Japan's Suzuka circuit and Sepang circuit in Malaysia.

The organizing cost will be paid by the private sector, represented by Vietnamese multi-sectoral firm Vingroup, he said.

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"I think everybody in Miami thought it was a great experience, there was great energy, great excitement, 80,000 people, and nearly all the comments we got were positive and excited about it", said Carey.

"The figures could be in the hundreds of million dollars. and the most important thing is to profit from it", he told AFP.

The South-East Asian country is a growing market for sponsors such as brewer Heineken and will give the region four races on the calendar again after the departure of Malaysia a year ago.

South Korea did the same in 2013 after facing low turnout to their race in remote Yeongam, and India pulled out in the same year also over money troubles. "There will be a greater effort", said team boss Otmar Szafnauer.

"It's important to have a long-term perspective". I think 18 was probably the best back in the day. He was 2nd in Mexico in 2015 and then 4th in Brazil a year ago.

Singapore has managed just that.

Vietnam has signed a 10-year deal to stage a street race through the capital of Hanoi.

"You've got macro parties and micro parties that are interested".

"You need to know what you're doing and how to spend the money", he added.

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