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Suzuka to remain on F1 Calendar until 2029

Written by Dan Jones

Credit: Issei Kato

Formula One will remain at the Suzuka International Racing Course until at least 2029 after the circuit signed a five-year contract extension with the governing body, putting any doubts over the race to rest, after it's contract was due to expire at the end of the season, amid rumours that the city of Osaka were planning to bring the Japanese Grand Prix to a new street circuit.

Suzuka has been a staple of the F1 calendar for nearly four decades, the first event taking place in 1987, won by Gerhard Berger, with F1 only being absent since in the 2007 and 2008 seasons, when Fuji Speedway hosted the race, and the COVID-19 struck years of 2021 and 2022.

A fan favourite, Suzuka is a true driver's circuit, featuring some of F1's most iconic corners at the likes of 130R and the sweeping 'S Curves' of the first sector, giving a real challenge to the drivers in one of F1's most physically demanding racetracks of the season, at an old-school style circuit, with the punishments for any mistakes being grass and gravel.

F1 CEO, Stefano Domenicali stated: "Suzuka is a special circuit and part of the fabric of the sport, so I am delighted that F1 will continue to race there until at least 2029. Our fans in Japan embrace Formula 1 with a unique passion and we look forward to working with the promoter to give fans the experience they deserve for years to come."

The race will be held at the earlier date of April 7th, moving from it's traditional October slot to avoid the monsoon season, which has been a significant factor in many Japanese Grands Prix at the past, most recently, the 2022 event, which saw the race red-flagged after a lap and only ran to approximately half-distance, in the race that saw Max Verstappen crowned World Driver's Champion for a second time.

Event promoter, Tsuyoshi Saito, added, We aim to create a sustainable future and currently we are preparing to welcome many fans for the 2024 Formula 1 Japanese Grand Prix in April, the first time the event will be held in the spring season. We will continue to work together with the local communities and government agencies, including Mie Prefecture and Suzuka City, so that Suzuka can continue to be loved by fans around the world and contribute to the prosperity of motorsports culture and industrial development.”

The Japanese fans will also be able to continue supporting home favourite, Yuki Tsunoda, only a further asset for the motorsport-mad Japanese fans, which have since been renowned for their incredible headwear, and the varying support of drivers worldwide. In addition to Tsunoda, Honda's official return to the sport with Aston Martin in 2026 will only bolster Japanese involvement in the sport.

Osaka had been rumoured with hosting a race earlier this year and wanted a long-term deal with the sport, particularly after the recent announcement that the sport will be leaving a traditional venue in the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya to a new venue in the Spanish capital, Madrid, beginning from the 2026 season.

But for now, Suzuka remains the home of the Japanese Grand Prix, and will remain to do so until 2029, a great result for Formula One, Formula One Fans, Suzuka and Japanese Motorsport.


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