Perez may quit F1 if calendar expands further

Date published: April 23 2022 - Michelle Foster

Sergio Perez sitting in his RB18 looking to the side. Imola April 2022

Sergio Perez has made it clear that if Formula 1’s calendar continues to grow, there will come a time when he considers walking away.

This year’s calendar was initially expected to the sport’s longest-ever with 23 grands prix on the list, however, Russia has since between dropped.

Formula 1 is in talks with several venues about replacing it with F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali saying there is a list of candidates open to taking the vacant slot.

However, even if he opts not to fill it, next season there will be 23 races with Las Vegas joining the calendar as the third American race.

Domenicali says more new events could be added in the years to come.

“I think there is potential to go to 24 [races],” he told Sky Sports last month. “I would say there is potential to go to 30 in terms of the interest we see all around the world.

“It is up to us to try to find the right balance considering what are the venues which would like to be in F1, what are the historical values we need to see on the calendar.”

But while the drivers have all welcomed Formula 1’s growing popularity, 30 races is a bit much for some of them, including Perez.

“What I’m really optimistic about is the fact it’s growing a lot,” the Express quotes the Red Bull driver as having told The Athletic. “I can see wherever we go in the world, you feel it on the streets, people recognise you a lot more.

“People are into the sport a lot more, there’s a very big demand. But on the other hand, having too many races is a no-go, at least for me.

“Right now you’re basically [immersed in] it because we have so many races. We have simulator sessions before each event. We have partner events.

“We basically have zero time for ourselves and for our families. I have a couple of young children [with a third on the way]. I think if the calendar [expands] more, then I definitely will not do it.”

 

His team boss Christian Horner agrees that 23 should be the limit.

“With 23 races you have already reached saturation point,” he said, as quoted by Motorsport-Total. “Maybe you have to think again about a few other races in the calendar.”