Le Castellet in danger for 2022?

After two seasons disrupted by the health crisis, F1 intends to regain a little more normalcy from 2022 with a calendar which should include 23 Grands Prix. Despite a contract valid for the next two seasons, France could give up its place.

Will Formula 1 finally experience the long-promised 23 Grand Prix season? While the health crisis has seriously affected the calendar in 2020 and forced some adjustments again this season with an Asian tour completely canceled, a first draft of the 2022 program is circulating in the paddock with echoes that emerged in the Anglo-Saxon press. A season of which, at present, the only certainty is the presence of a Grand Prix in Miami on a temporary circuit installed around the Hard Rock Stadium. However, while a first communication is expected at best on the sidelines of the Russian Grand Prix next weekend, it is a calendar with 23 dates which has leaked and which contains certain surprises. While the pre-season testing, which will be the first opportunity to see the all-new cars, is expected to be split between Barcelona and Bahrain, it is the kingdom of the Middle East which should host the first round on March 20. While the first edition will be the penultimate round of 2021, the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix should return earlier, from March 27, according to the will of the local authorities.

Traditions could be turned upside down in Monaco

Traditional opening round of the season, Australia should host on a revised Albert Park circuit and corrected the third stage in 2022 before the return of China, absent since 2019. While Vietnam could be an expected meeting of this first part of the season, the Hanoi urban circuit acts as a surprise absentee from this calendar with Miami which will take over from Shanghai on May 8 before returning to Europe. Spain will be one week ahead of the Monaco Grand Prix, the schedule of which should be significantly changed. Indeed, the traditional format over four days with the first free practice on Thursday should be abandoned, the teams in the Principality returning to their habits. Moreover, while Monaco did not pay to host F1, Liberty Media would have managed to obtain a sum of around thirteen million euros per season from the Automobile Club de Monaco. Another circuit in town, Baku would welcome the single-seaters on June 12, a week before the second passage in North America, in Canada. The start of July remains uncertain. While it is announced by the Silverstone Circuit for July 3, the British Grand Prix could swap its date with that of the Austrian Grand Prix the following weekend due to the Wimbledon final scheduled to take place on that date.

Imola ready to replace France?

In the process, a third Grand Prix should be organized over three consecutive weekends. However, its location is uncertain. While Circuit Paul-Ricard still has two years of contract with F1, the Grand Prix de France could be postponed due to the difficulties of access to the Castellet route. In such a case, everything indicates that Imola would take the place left vacant at the conclusion of the first “triple header” of the season. Hungary, for its part, would be the last stop before the summer break. A month of rest which would not be too much for the teams and the drivers because the program of the recovery promises to be intense. Indeed, no less than two « triple header » linked would be planned with a sequence Belgium, the Netherlands and Italy followed by the trio Russia, Singapore and Japan. However, the planned race in the City-State is uncertain as the contract between it and F1 has not yet been renegotiated and the space left free could be taken over by Turkey. The final stretch of the season would see the United States and Mexico follow one another at the end of October before the race in São Paulo and the final in Abu Dhabi., on a Yas Marina circuit which is currently getting a makeover for the 2021 edition of the event.

FORMULA 1 / SEASON 2022
Provisional timetable
20 mars : Bahrain (Sakhir)
27 mars : Saudi Arabia (Jeddah)
10 avril : Australie (Melbourne)
24 avril : China (Shanghai)
8 May : Miami
May 22: Spain (Barcelona)
May 29: Monaco
June 12: Azerbaijan (Baku)
June 19: Canada (Montreal)
July 3 : Great Britain (Silverstone) or Austria (Spielberg)
July 10: Austria (Spielberg) or Great Britain (Silverstone)
July 17: France (Le Castellet) or Imola
July 31 : Hungary (Hungaroring)
August 28: Belgium (Spa-Francorchamps)
September 4: Pays Bas (Zandvoort)
September 11th : Italy (Monza)
September 25: Russia (Sochi)
October 2: Singapore or Turkey (Istanbul)
October 9: Japon (Suzuka)
October 23: United States (Austin)
October 30: Mexique (Mexico)
November 13: São Paulo (Interlagos)
November 20: Abu Dhabi (Yas Marina)

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