Hungarian Grand Prix hangs on to F1 calendar spot


The Hungarian Grand Prix will remain on the F1 calendar until at least 2026, after organisers signed an extension to its contract with FOM yesterday.

Owners of the Hungaroring circuit are planning a revamp of their facilities next year following agreement from the Hungarian Government, that substantial funds would be made available for the re-development. The track has also received a complete resurface this year ahead of the upgrade.

Speaking to Autosport.com, F1 Chief Bernie Ecclestone confirmed his approval of the deal.

“They’re good supporters, they do a good job, good for the country, good for us, and I’m very, very happy we’re always in Hungary, and we’re staying there.”

Milos Seztak, Hungary’s National Development Manager, was pleased his team were able to secure the future of the Hungarian Grand Prix, believing it to be one of the biggest and most influential events to take place in his country.

“Without giving out secrets regarding the details of our contract, I can tell you we’ll be able to organise and run our F1 race for another five-year period under very favourable terms.

“However, despite the fact that after the grand prix everybody seems to be satisfied, saying they’ve had a great time here, we know further improvements are needed. The resurfacing work that has just finished was the first step in this direction.

“I can reveal the 2017 [governmental] budget submits substantial resources earmarked for the development of the circuit. This is because every year the race is one of the most important sporting events for our country, so the government of Hungary is committed to a good quality track such as the Hungaroring.”

The race in Budapest has been an inclusion on the F1 calendar since 1986, and has played host to some exciting tussles across the years. Jenson Button scored his first ever race win there for the Honda racing team back in 2006, and last year’s event was a thrilling encounter, that saw overtakes and incidents a plenty, culminating in a win for Sebastian Vettel who took Scuderia Ferrari’s first win at the Hungaroring since Michael Schumacher in 2004, and the German’s first ever win at this track.

In 2014, we were also presented with an action-packed race, at this once thought boring track, as Daniel Ricciardo took advantage of weather conditions and a safety car period, to win in dramatic style for Red Bull. It is also a circuit that seems to bring out the worst in the Mercedes AMG PETRONAS squad, who have only managed a best place finish of third for their drivers here in the last two seasons.