‘Race against time’ to finish Jeddah track – report

Date published: October 1 2021 - Jamie Woodhouse

First images of the Jeddah Street Circuit. June 2021.

Work on the Jeddah Street Circuit is reportedly taking place 24 hours a day to ensure the 2021 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix happens.

The Saudi Arabian Grand Prix is scheduled to make its Formula 1 debut as Round 21 of the season, held between December 3 and 5.

And although there remains talk of the event moving to a purpose-built track in the future, for now Formula 1 will race around a street circuit constructed in Jeddah along the Red Sea coast, marketed as Formula 1’s fastest street circuit, while only Spa-Francorchamps will be a longer lap.

Time appears very much to be the enemy though, with La Gazzetta dello Sport referencing a report from news agency AFP which shows the extent of the challenge.

Images from the news agency reportedly demonstrate large parts of the venue are still in need of work to reach completion.

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“We are working overtime, working 24 hours a day. But there is still a lot to do,” one of the organisers told AFP.

“It is a race against time, we are working 24 hours a day.”

Prince Khalid bin Sultan Al-Faisal, president of the Saudi Arabian Automobile Federation, did not comment on the construction of the track, only predicting a high demand for tickets.

“We expect a large number of visitors, especially from Europe and the USA,” he said.

“We are investing a lot in the project and we expect to recoup our expenses from ticket sales and advertising.”

 

Saudi Arabia is not the only Middle Eastern nation set to make its Formula 1 debut in 2021, with a Qatar Grand Prix now confirmed to precede the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

The Qatar Grand Prix will, though, take place at a track which has already been constructed, that being the Losail International Circuit which is well known in the world of MotoGP.

The country has also signed a 10-year deal starting from 2023 to host Formula 1, with reports that the Qatar Grand Prix could move to the streets of capital city Doha at that point.