Spa boss says 2023 F1 talks ‘going well’

Formula 1 will awake from its August slumber this weekend to face a sell-out crowd at Belgium’s fabled Spa-Francorchamps circuit.

Local media report that the full 360,000 tickets have been sold – but that still may not be enough to help the promoter’s negotiations for a new contract beyond 2022.

“The negotiations with FOM are going well,” race boss Vanassa Maes insisted to De Telegraaf newspaper.

“There are only 25 places on the calendar and everyone is pulling out all the stops to win a grand prix next year. Spa-Francorchamps is a historic and mythical circuit and we want to show that we embrace the future.”

With Spa’s future so clouded, however, F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has been forced to defend himself from accusations that he is “selling the soul of Formula 1”.

“I’m not selling the soul of Formula 1,” he told Sport Bild. “It’s just normal change.

“We are opening up to the whole world,” Domenicali added, referring to F1’s newest races in oil-rich countries like Qatar and Saudi Arabia and exciting contemporary destinations such as Miami and Las Vegas.

“Money is important everywhere – also for us,” the Italian admitted. “But we don’t just look at money. The overall package has to be right.

“If we only looked at the bank account, the calendar would definitely look different,” Domenicali told the German magazine.

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