2009 F1 calendar expected tomorrow with French round at Magny-Cours

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A provisional 2009 F1 calendar is expected to be announced tomorrow by Bernie Ecclestone according to Nigel Roebuck.

Among the changes for 2009 will be the first Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, announced last year. And on Sunday rumours came to light that Magny-Cours, host of the French Grand Prix, will get a second stay of execution.

Here’s how the 2009 F1 calendar might look:

Possible 2009 F1 calendar

Here’s how next year’s calendar could look – this is purely hypothetical so please don’t go booking time off work and buying plane tickets.

Rnd Date Event Circuit
1 13-15 March Australian Grand Prix Albert Park, Mebourne
2 20-22 March Malaysian Grand Prix Sepang International Circuit (possible night race)
3 3-5 April Bahrain Grand Prix Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir
4 24-26 April Spanish Grand Prix Montmelo, Circuit de Catalunya, Barcelona
5 8-10 May Turkish Grand Prix Istanbul Park
6 21-24 May* Monaco Grand Prix Monte-Carlo
7 5-7 June Canadian Grand Prix Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, Montreal
8 12-14 June United States Grand Prix Indanapolis Motor Speedway
9 26-28 June French Grand Prix Magny-Cours
10 3-5 July British Grand Prix Silverstone
11 17-19 July German Grand Prix** Nurburgring
12 31 July-2 August Hungarian Grand Prix Hungaroring
13 21-23 August European Grand Prix Valencia Street Circuit
14 4-6 September Belgian Grand Prix Spa-Francorchamps
15 11-13 September Italian Grand Prix Autodromo Nazionale Monza
16 25-27 September Singapore Grand Prix Singapore Street Circuit (night race)
17 2-4 October Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Yas Island
18 16-18 October Japanese Grand Prix Suzuka**
19 23-25 October Chinese Grand Prix Shanghai International Circuit
20 6-8 November Brazilian Grand Prix Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace, Interlagos, Sao Paulo

*Monaco is a four-day weekend
**May run under a different name due to contractual dispute
***Alternating each year with Fuji Speedway

The United States Grand Prix apparently has a 50-50 chance of remaining on the calendar, and will be back if a sponsor is found. The United States is the tenth largest television audience for F1, and although Formula 1 is a minority sport in the USA in terms of interest, its importance as a market is gigantic.

It could squeeze back onto the calendar by appearing the week after the Canadian Grand Prix (as it did last year) with the French race moving back a week next to the British race as it has been in the past.

The new Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is apparently going to be in October and likely will not be the season finale. Putting it next to Singapore would make some geographic sense but as India and South Korea arrive in 2010 this end of the calendar will need a serious shake-up.

Changes to Abu Dhabi

Plans for a radical ‘hybrid track’ at Abu Dhabi have been scaled back. The original scheme for a track that was part street circuit, part permanent race course. The street section was to include a dramatic blast along a marina.

According to Autosport “renowned F1 fixer Philippe Gurdjian” has been brought onto the project which suggests they ran into some problems. Gurdjian helped the Bahrainis get their track ready on time in 2004 so the race should be in safe hands.

French Grand Prix to stay?

Bernie Ecclestone said 2007 was going to be the last race at Magny-Cours, and then he said 2008 would as well. Both, it seems, were wrong.

His plans for a Paris Grand Prix street race will have to wait a little longer. There is still little indication the project might become a reality. Rumours are Magny-Cours will stay on the calendar until 2010.

Keep track of all the test sessions, car launches races and more in 2008 and beyond with the F1Fanatic.co.uk Formula 1 calendar for Google Calendar:

2009 F1 season

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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37 comments on “2009 F1 calendar expected tomorrow with French round at Magny-Cours”

  1. Woohoo! SEPANG 2009! Shooting for that as my 2nd live GP. Hope it works out for us. :D

  2. I wonder if they dare go to 20 races. I would love it, but I think it is out of the question for now. And I wouldn’t cry if Indianapolis and Magny-Cours got scrapped, because I think they are very boring tracks.

  3. Now you see it now you don’t! US, Belgian and French GPs…
    There ought to be these races, if not on those circuits – especially a French one, since thats where it all started.
    Isn’t the British GP supposed to be only a possible too? Since Bernie won’t be happy with Silverstone until he owns it!
    Why do we need a ‘European’ GP? This was done originally to make up the numbers one year, but with so many circuits to choose from, there is no need to visit any country twice in the same year.
    In fact, you would think that by now, with such a big choice all over the world, most countries with more than one suitable venue would have the race alternating between the different tracks, to give each one a chance and to vary the season for the drivers.
    This to me again shows how both the FIA and FOM aren’t thinking either about the fans or the drivers. Yes, there are fravourite cicuits, but now there will be newer street circuits, is there really an argument to go to Monaco every year, for example?

  4. DG – “Yes, there are fravourite cicuits, but now there will be newer street circuits, is there really an argument to go to Monaco every year, for example?”

    The year Monaco is dropped I will stop watching F1. If it gets dropped one year it will struggle to return. There is no other circuit that a fan can get so close to the action. There is also that glamour of Monaco that makes F1. F1 is money and Monaco has that in abundance. Even though I agree most see it as a procession. However, the lack of run off areas makes it for me.

    I also agree that there should not be a European GP now, if there are 2 circuits in a country they should alternate. France should keep a GP. Maybe the 2009 rules will improve passing opportunities there next year.

  5. Wow, DG, you’re questioning the Monaco GP? That’s quite a bold step for any F1 fan.

    Spectre, Ron Dennis has already said they’re OK with a maximum of 20 races, as long as the logistics are settled early. I’m guessing they appreciate the value of maximizing the entertainment value for the fans.

  6. Scott Joslin
    24th June 2008, 9:42

    DG – I wish Bernie would just buy Silverstone and be done with it, although slight contradiction there about the Monaco race. Monaco is a piece of F1 history and needs to be preserved on the calender the same as the French GP.

    We know why they are visiting Valencia – because of the Alonso factor in Span – there were so many fans that wanted to see him that couldn’t at Barcelona. So it is Bernies round about way of saying, I will help the fans see more of Fernando and they will help put more money into my back pocket. Interestingly though, he is not doing that well at the moment and if he cannot find a decent drive in 2009 I wonder if it will be oversubscribed like this year? Especially with the world financial climate meaning people have less money to spend of things like formula 1 – Two grand prix’s or Food and petrol??

    I like the look of that calender, it’s big! I hope they it stay like that Keith – Although I doubt it highly. As there seem to be very tightly packed during the summer and the end of the year.

  7. I like the look of the calender except i would only have 18 races therefore scrap magny – cours and indianapolis. Oh i forgot the circuit catalunya well replace it with another british track like Donington instead of replacing Silverstone which is where the first ever Grand prix was held. I hope the Abu dhabi track isn’t one of those boring tracks which Bernie has increased the cost yet the quality of racing will end up our. well we’ll see.

  8. I’m sure I read somewhere that Monaco was the only race that has a grandfather clause ensuring an event.So that’s safe.

    The thing with the European GP is that it should rotate around circuits as used to be the case before 1996 and when the Nurburgring had it for quite a few years.I’d like to see Imola back on the calendar , at least for a year under the European GP banner.Then give the Spanish GP title to Valencia , get rid of Catalunya and Hungaroring as they nearly always produce boring races.

  9. OK, perhaps Monaco is the wrong example, but as I have mentioned before, in one of the early rounds of circuit-bashing done by Bernie, it failed to comply with any of his desired requirements. I wouldn’t like to see Monaco go either – I just meant that there will have to be one or two old fravourites we have to say goodbye to in the long run – unless the FIA do have the sense to alternate tracks each year (which I doubt).

  10. Wouldn’t Nurburgring be under threat Keith after the German motoring assosication’s recent withdrawl to host FIA sanctioned events?

  11. The inconceivable is always possible in F1 and Monaco disappearing could happen. It’s relations have already soured with the World Rally Championship organisers.

    And Monaco is the only race where the circuit advertising rights go to the race promoters and not FOM – that’s why the advrtising hoardings at the track always look different to ones at other F1 circuits.

    Rabi – Possibly, but not heard anything concrete yet. And of course the dispute over the naming rights goes on – the Nurburgring may not be allowed to call their race the “German Grand Prix” because the Hockenheimring race organisers have the rights to that title. We could end up having another spurious “Luxembourg Grand Prix” again as in 1997-8!

  12. Scott Joslin
    24th June 2008, 10:59

    Good point Rabi, but applying that idea, the Amercian’s motoring association have been quite damming of the FIA / Max Mosley case – However. I am unsure if they have anything to do with the race at Indy though.

    In the previous Concorde Agreement I think there were four races that had protection clauses, these included France, Monza, Silverstone and Monaco. Without a Concorde these are very exposed to getting the chop – except Monaco!

  13. sChUmAcHeRtHeGrEaTeStEvEr
    24th June 2008, 12:14

    DG- The main reason the european grand prix is hosted is for commercial reasons. It was always at the nurburgring when schumachwer was around because there would always be huge crowds there to support him.

    the same has now happened for alonso, look at the huge crowds there this year 95% were alonso fans probably so bernie knows putting another grand prix in spain makes sense to his wallet.

    i think 20 races may be a bit much to be honest.

  14. Apparently it was reproted on the Speed TV channel in America yesterday that Indianapolis is on the provisional 2009 F1 calendar. It was on Speed Report, if anyone saw that and has any more information please let us know.

  15. During the practice 2 for the Canadian GP, Speed TV commentator Bob Varsha did say that Bernie had been to the Speedway to have discussions with Tony George.

    So maybe they signed a deal…

  16. that “provisional” is the key word … we may see 20 races calendar tomorrow with “provisional” attached to several races – USA, Magny Cours, even Abu Dhabi as the track is yet to be certified …

  17. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a deal between B. Eccelstone and T. George. Yes, the track is a bit boring, but it brings F1 to the U.S., and that’s a good thing.

    Lose Monaco? Ridiculous. Monaco is the heart and sould of Grand Prix racing…in my humble opinion.

  18. I never understood why they dont end the season in Europe. It would seem that you would want your grand finale to be where your biggest audience is.

    Why not end the season with a second British race? All the teams are based and head back to Britain after the Brazilian race anyway.

  19. USA! USA! USA!

    I hope we get our Grand Prix back…

  20. I like the US GP, because its an evening race for us Europeans, and I like evening races a lot. Feel more special somehow.

  21. Macademianut
    24th June 2008, 18:06

    I hope they bring the USA grand prix back for only one reason. FOX currently has the deal to broadcast three races per season. They always broadcast the race from 10.00 AM (pacific time). The more races are held in America, the more it will be live. Currently, we say the French GP recorded; and now Silverstone will also be carried by FOX..so it’s not going to be live.

    The only good thing about FOX is that it’s HD broadcast.

  22. I only hope that this will actually happen…our US grand prix coming back would make me very happy.Maybe the track is a little boring at Indy but,it has great heritage and I am proud of it.Come on!…there has to be a US GP…..and France deserves it as well.

  23. DG, dude, Monaco?, srsly DUDE!


    instead of making a rational retort I shall merely say “but dude Monaco?”

    BUT DUDE MONACO? your nuts!

  24. Keith, World Rally is back at Monte Carlo.

  25. Sush – You may be more up-to-date on this, but last I heard it was only on the WRC calendar alternate years which they weren’t happy about and they were looking into defecting to the International Rally Championship full time.

    Regardless, just because Monaco is such a presitigious race for F1 doesn’t mean it isn’t expendable. Ecclestone may decide other venues such as Singapore offer the same kind of glamour but without having to give up the valuable signage fees.

  26. yep its back full time, providing they use the F1 track while its being built. And they dont suffer the cost since the track is there and pre paid.

    now hopefully the most dangerous track of all should follow suit and come back full time…….. Corsica (please please please)… for the guys and girls not knowing of Rally on Keiths blog, Corsica is to Rally what Monte Carlo is to F1, but instead of a wall if you make a mistake, its a drop off the mountain.

  27. Bringing back the US Grand Prix would be great. I’m not able to afford traveling international so being able to travel domestic would allow me to go to the USGP. I know it would never happen, because Bernie gets so much money from those tracks, but why don’t they run one race less in Asia and run one in the US and another one in Europe? Spa is an awesome track and produced some good races.

  28. Paulo, I’m not sure if you are aware, but Spa did come back on the schedule a few years back and appears to be safe for awhile. I don’t have the exact details of whatever deal they made with Bernie- perhaps Keith or one of the other can fill us in on that. If any trend emerged towards including another European venue, I imagine Imola would be beating down the door for that spot…

    On the topic of the USGP possibly being back, few things would make me happier. I hope we some kind of official word coming up soon, because if it is indeed back, I’ll jump for joy!! I’ve been checking for word on it for months, so we’ll just need to see what happens.

    And good for Magny-Cours if they do keep the race- perhaps it is less glamourous, but I think it would provide a much better race than a street track in Paris or anywhere elese.

  29. Great, now I can begin planning next years holiday. Still no word though, on whether the OZGP has been saved past 2010 :(

  30. Gman, I always thought that Spa was one of those races that was up in the air but if they did succeeded in securing a long term deal that’s great. Imola back on the calendar would definitely be nice.

  31. Journeyer, if you’re coming to Malaysia 2009 look me up. We’ll probably have our F1 simulators somewhere so you might want to try it out. Email me at [email protected] or find me on FB…cheers

  32. have they sorted out the pits @ Spa?
    the entrance is too tight.

    and the buildings don’t conform to fire safety laws, Bernie says that doesn’t worry him though.

  33. French GP confirmed for 2009 by FFSA: More here

  34. And here’s the FIA’s provisional calendar. No USA, France is there, 19 races. Abu Dhabi will be the season finale in late November, despite earlier reports it would be in October. Turkey is moving later in the calendar closer to its original slot: More here

  35. Heres another worrying thought for you…..
    Since the circuits that appeal most to Bernie are the ones which are happy to spend their cash and give him the profits, and those at the moment are in the Middle East and Far East, I can see the whole F1 circus gradually moving away from Europe.
    Bernie is also in discussions for circuits in India, so how about a theoretical calendar of:
    4.Eygpt (they used to race there)
    7.Abu Dhabi
    As you see its 15 races before you need to think about using the circuits that Bernie doesn’t like!

  36. Ooops, I have noticed that I should have included Singapore in there too, so you can drop Hungary off the end…..

  37. Francois, indeed if the event known as the European GP was kept around, it would be great to see it move to different venues- Imola, Brno in the Czech Rrepublic, that new track in Portugal…Sadly, as Scott and sChUmAcHeRtHeGrEaTeStEvEr point out, The Euro GP is just a money-making sprint for Bernie- he knows he could sell out 20 races in Spain if given the chance, so why not hand them a second one?

    The one thing that I do disagree with sChUmAcHeRtHeGrEaTeStEvEr on is…why is 20 races too much? We’re talking about the most advanced form of racing in the world, and the teams and series all have plenty of money. Let’s start the season earlier, wipe out the 3-weke gap, and see some more RACING- with at least one trip to the USA back in there!

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