November 23, 2019 | News | No Comments
Local government officials of the two biggest cities in the Netherlands have effectively ruled themselves out of hosting a Dutch Grand Prix.
Formula 1’s commercial boss Sean Bratches was recently in the country to talk about the possibility of staging a street race there.
But representatives of both cities have told Motorsport.com that there has been no contact with Bratches of the Formula 1 management team.
“A car race should take place on a circuit, not in an old city centre,” said a spokesperson for Amsterdam’s civic administration.
“Rotterdam has not been approached regarding a Formula 1 event,” said a counterpart for that city. “So there have also been no discussions about this,”
In the case of Rotterdam, the door was left open for longer-term talks about hosting a race.
“In the coming three years this would be unthinkable,” said the spokesperson. They explained that the problem was “due to a renovation of the Maastunnel and a refurbishment of the Coolsingel.”
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“This aside, with the City Racing events that were held earlier, there were already many who had their doubts in relation to the environmental impact and noise disturbance.”
The Dutch Grand Prix was traditionally held at Zandvoort until 1985. But the current Formula 1 owners believe that the sport should be brought right into major cities.
“Street races are always fun,” said Red Bull boss Christian Horner earlier this week. “They always have big crowds and big atmospheres.”
It’s the huge popularity of Max Verstappen in his home country that has given Formula 1 bosses the incentive to revive the Dutch Grand Prix.
“The amount of support there is behind Max in Holland at the moment means it would bring the country to a stop,” commented Horner.
But with Amsterdam and Rotterdam both pouring cool if not ice cold water on the prospect for the time being at least, it seems that Zandvoort might turn out to be the best option after all if F1 truly wants to go Dutch.
“In Amsterdam? That’s fine,” tweeted Eric van der Burg, who is in charge of sports affairs for the city’s municipal executive.
“But in Amsterdam Beach [Zandvoort], where they have a beautiful track. Not in the city centre of Amsterdam.”
Zandvoort is currently conducting a study into the feasibility of holding a Formula 1 Grand Prix again in the future. The Assen TT Circuit, which currently hosts the MotoGP, would be another potential candidate.
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