The FIA have released a provisional calendar for the 2008 Formula One season. It was announced a while back that Valencia had made it into the campaign with their street circuit, and although Abu Dhabi would have to wait until 2009, Singapore was announced as a possible venue for a night race. America was recently ditched after negotiations broke down, and France were in and out in a relatively short timeframe. Below is what has been proposed thus far, but as usual, there may be changes made between now and next March.
|1.||March 16th||Australia||Albert Park|
|5.||May 11th||Turkey||Istanbul Park|
|6.||May 25th||Monaco||Monte Carlo|
|7.||June 8th||Canada||Circuit Gilles Villeneuve|
|8.||June 22nd||France||Magny Cours|
|9.||July 6th||Great Britain||Silverstone|
|14.||September 14th||Belgium||Spa Francorchamps|
All circuits listed are unofficial. The FIA have not stipulated which circuits the races will run, and while most of them are fairly obvious, some are not. An official announcement will be posted when the FIA release the full calendar.
It is worth mentioning the continued absence of Imola from the calendar, as well as one of the fans favourites, Suzuka in Japan. The races appear to be more evenly spaced than 2007, which is a welcome return. The calendar still features a three week break between the opening flyaways and the start of the European season, as well as the now traditional summer break. And again I will suggest that one of these weekends be used for the Asian/Pacific Grand Prix, held at Suzuka. Just a suggestion, mind…
Also worthy of a mention is the title given to the Valencia race: The European Grand Prix. This year, Germany started their rotation of the race between Nurburgring and Hockenheim. However, owners/promoters of ‘The Hock’ own the rights to the term ‘German Grand Prix’, and this meant the Nurburgring were forced to call the ’07 race The Grand Prix of Europe. Now, this is fine for 2008, when the race is held at Hockenheim and will be called the German Grand Prix. But happens in 2009? Two European Grands Prix? Seriously Bernie, fix this now because new fans are going to get confused. For crying out loud, it’s just a name!
Other than that, a mighty fine 18-race calendar with just enough room to squeeze Suzuka back in and maybe another jaunt around the Italian countryside for the San Marino event.
Also, new poll added to the homepage: Which circuit would you add to the 2008 F1 calendar? I’ve allowed you guys to add your own choice as well, so feel free to suggest a track that you think would make for a great Grand Prix next year.