Photo: Ferrari

Future of Monza Unclear Once Again

By Joey Barnes, Editor-in-Chief

In what has become a consistent series of unfortunate circumstances, the future of the Italian Grand Prix at Monza is once again in doubt.

One of the most revered events on the calendar, the Italian circuit is the oldest and among the most historic in Formula 1. A three-year deal was agreed upon after lengthy negotiations in 2016 between Autombile Club of Milan, which own the circuit, and former F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone. Although its race date for 2018 is safe, political obstacles have endangered the possibility of continuing Formula 1’s longest-running Grand Prix.

In an interview with La Gazzetta dello Sport, Automobile Club of Milan president Angelo Sticchi Damiani discussed the growing concerns brought on by the Italian government on their failure to approve an amendment with the 2018 Budget Law.

“If conditions change we can no longer guarantee the future of the Grand Prix at Monza,” said Damiani.

The reality is that the current situation could lead to restrictions of the rules governing public finance when the circuit is nearing the century mark and trying to keep up with the demands of Formula 1.

“But we do not cost a euro to the state and we do not ask for anything, but at least do not hinder us,” continued Damiani.

“However, in 2022 this plant will be one hundred years old and it is right to adapt it.”

A meeting was held in London last week, which saw every promoter of each of the 21 tracks in attendance. Overall, it was a chance for Liberty Media to explain their plans to manage future Grand Prix events. Overall, Damiani’s impression of the meeting brings some concerns as the sport moves forward.

“What I noticed was a general suffering,” said Damiani.

“On the part of Liberty it is because a monstrous investment has been made and now there must be a return. And also with the teams, who have even higher costs, and us as organizers.”

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Joey Barnes is the Founder of Motorsports Tribune. He has covered auto racing since 2013 that has spanned from Formula 1 to NASCAR, with coverage on IndyCar. Additionally, his work has appeared on Racer, and Autoweek magazine. In 2017, he was recognized with an award in Spot News Writing by the National Motorsports Press Association.