Oct.1 (GMM) Africa’s return to the Formula 1 calendar is not dead in the water, according to F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali.
A deal for Kyalami, having last hosted a grand prix in 1993, was considered by insiders to be almost a dead certainty for 2023.
Ultimately, the deal fell through reportedly for financial reasons.
“The reason is that the F1-appointed local promoter was unable to deliver on the financial guarantees,” Anton Roux, president of Motorsport South Africa (MSA) and a member of the FIA Senate, told News24 last week.
“We now need to replace the local promoter, but I am very confident that we’ll be on the 2024 calendar.”
Domenicali is also hopeful, but he is leaving the door open for another African venue other than Kyalami.
“It’s a very clear goal,” he told Sky Italia on the sidelines of the Singapore GP when asked about organising a race on the African continent.
“Africa will come back and hopefully be on our calendar very soon.”
New rumours suggest that Domenicali is actually aiming for an African GP next year.
“We just have to make sure that when we do something new, we do it with the right partners and have a stable foundation to stay longer,” said the Italian.
“It would be wrong to go there for a year and then disappear if the conditions are not right. It’s not only about having the right financial means, but also preparing the place for the weekend we want to host there.
“The only thing I can say after the first contact with Kyalami is that there are other places in Africa that are interested in Formula 1 as well,” Domenicali insisted.