FIA chief hints at calendar change as Madrid GP rumours continue

Sam Cooper
Sergio Perez during a showrun in Madrid

Madrid is expected to be added to the calendar in 2026.

A senior FIA official has suggested two Spanish races in a season is not out of the question with an official announcement on Madrid expected this week.

Following long-held rumours, an F1 race in Madrid took another step forward last week when a report suggested an official announcement of the race was imminent.

Madrid looks likely to arrive in 2026 but that leaves the question of what will happen to Barcelona with the Catalonian race having been part of F1 since 1991.

Two Spanish GPs not out of the question says FIA official

Carmelo Sanz de Barros is the president of the FIA senate and has recently been speaking about the future of F1 racing in his home country.

Sanz de Barros, who was born and studied in Madrid, suggested having two races in Spain in a single year was not something that had been ruled out.

“As a Spaniard, born in Madrid, I want F1 in Madrid again, it is clear,” he said as reported by Spanish newspaper AS. “As president of RACE, the last one was in 1981 (in Jarama) so having F1 in Madrid again is the wish of many people.

“Is it possible to have two races? Yes, why not? We have three in the United States and two in Italy. There have been before.”

But Sanz de Barros did also suggest the race was not as close to completion as some may think.

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“I think there is a process to establish a grand prix and I don’t think it has been followed,” the 63-year-old said.

“The sports authority in motorsports in Spain is the federation (RFEdA), and to date the project has not been received. If it is considered valid and interesting, it is channelled to the FIA ​​to deal with homologations and certifications, especially with a semi-urban circuit.

“Nobody in the FIA ​​has yet worked on this project that is in the press. Then, when it is approved and homologated, there is a tough battle to be included in the calendar. And finally, a trade and rights agreement. Maybe we start the house with the roof. Likewise, I know of at least two other projects to bring F1 to Madrid.”

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