Monza to remain on F1 calendar until 2019

MONZA, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 02: Daniel Ricciardo of Australia driving the (3) Red Bull Racing Red Bull-TAG Heuer RB12 TAG Heuer on track during practice for the Formula One Grand Prix of Italy at Autodromo di Monza on September 2, 2016 in Monza, Italy. (Photo by Charles Coates/Getty Images)/ Credit: Red Bull Content Pool

Following a long running saga as to whether the Autodromo Nazionale Monza would remain as a grand prix venue on the F1 calendar in 2017, an agreement that will see the track continue as the location of the Italian Grand Prix for the next three years, has finally been accepted.

The much anticipated announcement was made on Friday as F1 Chief Bernie Ecclestone, FIA President Jean Todt and Club d’Italia president Angelo Sticchi Damiani sat down to discuss the future of the northern Milan circuit.

Though it was confirmed that the contract itself could not be signed this weekend due to legal implications, Ecclestone made it clear that a new deal had definitely been put in place to extend the current agreement for a further three years.

“Regretfully we cannot sign it here legally.

“More importantly we have reached an agreement after a few months of negotiations between the lawyers.

“We are going through all the small details together and we will sign this back in England.

“The contract is only for three years, but I hope we will be here for another 100.”

The agreement will see Monza be included on the calendar until 2019, which is good news considering Ecclestone had previously voiced concerns that the future of Monza, one of the longest standing grand prix circuits in F1 since the sports inception in 1950, could be in doubt. As a back-up the F1 Supremo had even started negotiations with organisers at Imola,  in the event that a deal with Club d’Italia bosses could not be struck.

Chief Sticchi Damiani, who has always been in favour of the Italian Grand Prix remaining at Monza, was however able to secure the backing of the Italian Government in the nick of time, and finally get the go ahead for the contract renewal.