Christian Horner wants to see classic tracks such as Spa, Silverstone and Monza protected from dropping off the Formula 1 calendar in the future.
The future of the Belgian Grand Prix is currently uncertain, with Spa-Francorchamps coming into the final year of its contract to host Formula 1 – and organisers have admitted that talks over a contract renewal have not been “easy”, with Belgium facing competition from several competing nations for a place on the calendar.
Silverstone’s place in Formula 1 has also repeatedly been scrutinised over the years, but Horner believes circuits with such a high status within the history of the sport should be kept on the calendar.
He likened such tracks losing their places in the sport to one of the cornerstone events in tennis being omitted from the yearly schedule.
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“Spa, for sure… it’s one of those historic races,” Horner said to Sky Sports F1.
“Monza, Silverstone, Spa, they’re the big and historic ones, we should ringfence those and protect those.
“It’s great that there’s these new events coming in and there’s interest. But you’ve got to have that history. It’d be like having the ATP Tour without Wimbledon.
“They’re part of our history, they’re part of our DNA. We’ll definitely make our opinion known, but you’ve got to trust the people who are running the business at the end of the day.”
World Championship leader Max Verstappen is also a vocal supporter of Spa’s place on the calendar, ranking it at the very top of his list of favourite tracks.
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Having also been born in Belgium, he is always greeted with a sea of orange with plenty of his fans in attendance, but he simply enjoys the experience of going around the famous circuit.
“It would be a big shame to lose Spa,” Verstappen said. “It’s my favourite track in the world.
“I think it’s just an amazing track in a Formula 1 car.”
The Belgian Grand Prix gets underway on Friday as Formula 1 returns from its summer break, with Verstappen holding an 80-point lead at the top of the Drivers’ Championship, and Red Bull leading Ferrari in the Constructors’ standings by 97 points.
Significant changes have been made to the circuit in time for this year’s race, with track resurfacing and gravel traps introduced to make the circuit more challenging for the drivers, as well as extra safety measures and a new grandstand added at Eau Rouge and Raidillon.