Former Formula One chief Bernie Ecclestone admits the sport is being “devalued” with the addition of more races to the calendar. Next year, a record 22 races have been scheduled – including the return of the Dutch Grand Prix for the first time in 35 years.
There will also be a maiden race in Vietnam, due to take place on a street circuit in the capital of Hanoi. However, the German Grand Prix at Hockenheim has been removed from the calendar as the track owners could not agree a deal to keep it running. There are also provisional plans to increase the calendar to 24 races in 2021, though they are not yet confirmed.
Ecclestone, who was the figurehead of the sport until 2017, says too many races can take away the special nature of F1. He told Auto Motor und Sport: “[24 races is] Definitely too much. 16 races are enough. “The more races there are, the more the product is devalued.
“We have already experienced this supersaturation in tennis. There are 100 tournaments, but not even ten matter. “If there are only 16 races, the organizers have to pay more accordingly. “And they will do it. Because their event is all the more valuable due to the shortage of the Grands Prix.”