Lewis Hamilton’s appeals for an F1 race in Africa appear to have fallen upon deaf ears with the FIA reportedly set to announce a new Grand Prix on the streets of Madrid in 2026 ‘very soon’.
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Should the race get the greenlight, it would be staged in 2026 with two Grands Prix being held in Spain that year, according to Okdiario. Although the Madrid race will initially be staged as part of two races in Spain, it is expected to eventually replace the Barcelona GP.
The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, however, isn’t willing to give in without a fight. As per Marca, the Catalan track is attempting to extend their deal, which expires in 2026, for a further 10 years.
Hamilton had been hoping for F1 to return to Kyalami to bring back the South African Grand Prix but despite F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali’s insistence that they want to develop the brand in Africa, no steps have been taken as of yet to make that a reality with a new race in Europe instead set to be announced.
Domenicali said last year: “There are areas of the world that wants to have Formula One, and I think that one area that we want to develop is the African area. We are a world championship, and that’s an area where we are not there.”
Speaking back in 2015 after claiming his third Drivers’ Championship title, Hamilton told the BBC: “I would love for it to be in South Africa. They are great sporting fans and are just petrolheads who love cars. I would love to go there, it would be absolutely insane.
“There is a huge following there and it is one of the most important Grands Prix we need to get on the calendar. This is the first time that black South Africans have had someone to relate to in this sport. I feel incredibly privileged to be at the front of that.”
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