Joao Doria, mayor of São Paulo, is adamant that the Autódromo José Carlos Pace is to be put up for sale.
The Brazilian Grand Prix venue held its first race in 1972. A short run of races were held at Jacarepaguá in Rio de Janeiro until the race returned to Interlagos in 1990 where it has remained ever since.
Its sale would result in an upgrade to the on-site facilities, with plans in place for the construction of a hotel, luxury apartments and a museum dedicated to the late Ayrton Senna.
“The privatisation of the track is the guarantee of the continuity of Formula 1,” the mayor told Reuters. “I understand that Formula 1 is important, but with private money, not public money.
“It’s perfectly possible for it to keep running with private money as a private track.”
According to Doria, former F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone is an interested party who will be active during the auction.
“He showed interest. He’s going to participate in the auction for the track,” he added. “I have the impression that international funds are going to take part as well. I have no doubt that we will sell the Interlagos track, and sell it well.”
Ecclestone was reserved in his reply when asked about the possible purchase, stating that he is still undecided.
“They want to sell. They’re not going to subsidise anything there. They’re not going to put any money into it. They want to get rid of it,” he said. “I haven’t made [a decision], ‘yes, I’m going to buy’ or ‘no, I ain’t going to buy’.”
He did however suggest that Liberty Media, the new owners of Formula 1, could make a bid themselves.