Interlagos signs deal to host Brazilian Grand Prix to 2025

Formula 1

Sao Paulo’s Interlagos circuit has signed a five-year deal to host the Brazilian Grand Prix until 2025.

The official name of the race will be the Sao Paulo Grand Prix, reflecting the city’s investment in the event.

It signals the end of plans backed by Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro to move the country’s grand prix to a new circuit in Rio de Janeiro.

A new promoter for the race has been established after problems between the previous promoter in Sao Paulo and F1.

The promoter, Brasil Motorsport, is a company “owned by investment entities controlled by Mubadala, a global investment company from Abu Dhabi,” F1 said in a statement.

The deal safeguards the future of one of F1’s most historic and charismatic circuits.

Interlagos first held the Brazilian GP in 1972. The event moved to Jacarepagua in Rio from 1981-89, after a one-off in 1978, before switching back to Interlagos on a shorter version of the track from 1990.

Although renowned as one of the most atmospheric venues on the calendar, Sao Paulo has not been without problems, with crime a major concern for a number of years after F1 personnel were repeatedly targeted for robberies at gun point.

F1 chairman Chase Carey said: “Brazil is a very important market for Formula 1 with devoted fans and a long history in the sport.

“The race in Brazil has always been a highlight for our fans, the drivers and our partners and we look forward to providing Formula 1 fans with an exciting race at Interlagos in 2021 and over the next five years.”

Sao Paulo mayor Bruno Covas said: “It is a great joy to be able to announce that Interlagos will continue to host one of the most important events in world motorsports. We made a tremendous effort to keep the race in our city.”

The plan for a new track in the Deodoro region of Rio has hit problems because it required the felling of a patch of forest. Permission to cut down the trees has not been forthcoming from the authorities in the city and the plan became shrouded in controversy after campaigners – including world champion Lewis Hamilton – opposed it.

The previous promoter at Interlagos, Tamas Rohonyi, was a close ally of former F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone, who was removed from his post when new owners Liberty Media took over the sport in 2017.

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