F1 to stage its longest-ever season in 2016
With the return of the German GP and the addition of Azerbaijan to the schedule, F1 is set to hold a staggering 21 races next year
A provisional Formula 1 calendar published by the FIA in July has revealed that the number of grands prix staged in 2016 could increase to 21 – one more than the all-time record of 20 races held in 2012.
The additional two races are accounted for by the inaugural European Grand Prix in Azerbaijan’s capital Baku, and the return of the German GP at Hockenheim. These two races are scheduled to run consecutively, with Azerbaijan on 17 July and Germany on 31 July. That timetable is partly inuenced by the desire of the Azerbaijan government to emphasise that the country is a part of Europe.
There are still doubts about the long-term future of the German race. Hockenheim and the Nürburgring have rotated the event in previous years, but the Nürburgring still has nancial problems, and Hockenheim chiefs say they can’t afford to host the race every year. Hockenheim has said a strong attendance at the 2016 event is necessary if F1 is to “have a future” in Germany.
The Russian GP will move from October to May, while Malaysia moves from March to September, to run back-to-back with Singapore.