Formula One racing returns to Netherlands for the first time in 35 years

May 14 2019 , 12:13 pm

Max Verstappen’s rise as one of the sport’s biggest stars has encouraged F1 to strike a deal in the Dutchman’s homeland. And, on Tuesday morning, it was confirmed that Zandvoort, which last staged a grand prix in 1985, becomes Liberty Media’s second new race under its regime.

The Dutch round is set to replace the Spanish Grand Prix, which is one of five races out of contract at the end of the year. While a grand prix in Vietnam’s capital Hanoi will also be added to the schedule in 2020, the future of the British Grand Prix is uncertain. The event at Silverstone in July is set to be the last unless a new agreement is reached.

Silverstone chiefs, who were in Barcelona last weekend, are hopeful a contract extension will be agreed, but say there are a number of sticking points which could yet scupper the deal. They are keen to avoid heading into this year’s race without a future agreement in place.

Zandvoort has signed up to a three-year contract with F1, and the additions of rounds there, and in Vietnam, could see the calendar increase to an unprecedented 23 races next season. But along with Britain and Spain, the races in Italy, Germany and Mexico are also in the last term of their respective deals.

Monza and F1 recently announced an agreement in principle to continue racing at the historic venue until 2024, but there is a feeling that Spain, Germany and Mexico are set to be dispersed with. Plans for a race in Miami have also been sidelined due to local opposition. The Zandvoort track will undergo a facelift in order to bring it up to speed with modern-day grand prix racing. The circuit was a prominent fixture on the F1 calendar until 1985, a race won by Niki Lauda.

“We are particularly pleased to announce that Formula One is returning to race in the Netherlands,” said the sport’s chairman Chase Carey. “From the beginning of our tenure in Formula One, we said we wanted to race in new venues, while also respecting the sport’s historic roots in Europe.

“Next season therefore, we will have a brand new street race that will be held in the Vietnamese capital of Hanoi, as well the return to Zandvoort – a track that has contributed to the popularity of the sport all over the world.

“In recent years, we’ve seen a resurgence of interest in Formula One in Holland, mainly due to the enthusiastic support for the talented Max Verstappen, as seen from the sea of orange at so many races. No doubt this will be the dominant colour in the Zandvoort grandstands next year.”


  • Sauber F1 boss Kaltenborn Leaves Team