The Victorian government has secured the right to host the Australian Grand Prix for an additional two years, ensuring one of the nation’s most anticipated motorsport races will remain in Albert Park until 2037.
The extension builds on a 10-year contract the state won six months ago, and will see Melbourne host the first race of the Formula 1 season for at least four years between 2023 and 2037. Saudi Arabia is set to host the first race in 2024 due to the timing of Ramadan, which falls between 10 March and 8 April.
The news comes after Australian Grand Prix Corporation CEO Andrew Westacott announced he would retire from his role after next year’s race, which he has been spearheading for more than a decade.
Westacott - who is only one of six people to fill the role since Melbourne’s first Grand Prix in 1996 - will depart his role at a time to-be-determined between the conclusion of the 2023 Grand Prix and 30 June.
“To have secured what is now 15 years of further tenure for the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne is an outstanding outcome,” Westacott said.
“It provides so many benefits to our city, our economy and our exceptional events industry, not to mention the aspiration it provides to young Australians pursuing their dreams in motorsport.”
While the COVID-19 pandemic saw the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix cancelled both in 2021 and 2020, the event drew a record crowd of 419,000 people this year.
The Australian Grand Prix is estimated to deliver more than $170 million to Victoria each year and will return to Albert Park from 30 March to 2 April 2023.
Tickets for next year's main day race sold out in only three-and-a-half hours after going on sale, highlighting an increasing demand for the event, which will include Formula 2 and 3 racing from next year.
“Securing the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix event in Melbourne for the next 12 years is an incredible result that will boost businesses and local jobs, while showcasing the state to millions of spectators right across the globe,”Tourism, Sport and Major Events Steve Dimopoulos said.
“We’re backing a summer like no other with a spectacular offering of major events and activities that encourage Victorians to revel in the best the state has to offer, while delivering more visitors to businesses across Victoria.”
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