Brown in favour of calendar rotation for more ‘sustainable’ F1 races

McLaren boss Zak Brown believes a calendar rotation in F1 involving a quarter of the sport’s events would help some races become more sustainable in the future.

Formula 1 is set for a record-breaking 23-race schedule this season, at least if race promoters are spared any further disruption caused by the lingering COVID-19 pandemic.

Teams will kick off their campaign in Bahrain on March 28 and conclude the season in Abu Dhabi on December 5, a long stretch that will also include three triple-headers in the back half of the season.

Last year, new venues such as Portimão and Mugello successfully hosted their first ever Grand Prix while F1 returned to the Nurburgring and revisited Imola and Istanbul.

Among the new or revived venues, several have expressed their interest in being awarded a permanent slot on the sport’s calendar.

But despite this year’s packed schedule, F1 boss Stefano Domenicali recently alluded to a reduction of the number of races in the future and the possibility of rotating events moving forward.


Brown finds the prospect appealing as it would lighten the burden on team personnel but also introduce more variance into the calendar while allowing some events to become more cost-effective.

“I’d like to get to a place where we are rotating some races,” the McLaren Racing boss told

“I’m a big believer that if a good country wants a Grand Prix, that’s a great thing. I think the more countries we race in, the better.

“That being said, I think there’s two things to consider with the size of the schedule. There’s first and foremost is your people. It’s a brutal schedule.

“And then the other is the scarcity of the races. If you look at NFL, there are I think 16 regular season games, and three or four play-offs. The Olympics is massively popular, that’s every four years, as is the World Cup.

“We know some Grands Prix tail off over time, and so actually if you didn’t make it an annual thing, but every two years, would some of those grands prix be actually more sustainable because you don’t have the burn-out?”

    Read also: Domenicali aiming for fans in F1’s grandstands in 2021

Brown sees an F1 world championship built around 20 events as “ideal”, with a quarter of the races rotated each year.

“In our ideal world, you would do 20 grands prix per year,” he said.

“Maybe there are 25 markets, and maybe 15 of those are fixed events, because there is a commercial reality of this sport.

“You do have to balance all of the various interests, and we do need to get the sport to add up.

“I’d like to see there be a day where we’re in 25 markets, 15 core grands prix, and 10 other races – five of them are one year, and then five the next year.

“You might create more sustainable venues in some of those instances because people will go, ‘oh, it’s only around every two years, so I don’t want to miss it next year’.”

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