Canada GP resisting F1’s date change push

Wed, 14 June 2023, 10:00

Jun.14 (GMM) Organisers of the Canadian GP are resisting Formula 1’s efforts to change the time of year in which the annual race in Montreal takes place.

The event at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve has a contract with F1 until 2031, but that hasn’t stopped the sport’s boss Stefano Domenicali from kicking off talks about a date change.

That is because, now with three races in the United States each year and with F1 also heading to Mexico and Canada, it makes much more sense to group the North American rounds together for logistical reasons.

“This has been discussed for a long time,” Canada GP boss Francois Dumontier told La Presse, “and I fully understand the reasoning of the governing bodies.

“On paper, it’s an easy problem to solve. But that’s actually far from being the case in reality. And with 23 events on its calendar, F1 must deal with 23 different realities.”

Dumontier said the biggest “sticking point” with a proposed date change for Montreal is “mainly the weather”.

He insists Formula 1 isn’t pressuring him, but at the same time admitted he may be open to a compromise.

“I can hardly even imagine a race before the beginning of June,” he said.

Another issue, Dumontier adds, is that the track on the artificial island Il Notre Dame – part of Montreal’s third largest park complex – is not permanent.

“It takes time to put everything in place and in doing so, we risk disrupting the activities of Parc Jean-Drapeau,” he said. “And, in the fall, we could also find ourselves in conflict with congresses, for example.”

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