Formula One 'hopeful' of adding South Africa to race calendar 2 weeks ago

Formula One 'hopeful' of adding South Africa to race calendar

The race would be held at the Kyalami circuit

Formula One are attempting to add South Africa to their race calendar, with boss Stefano Domenicali hopeful of adding it as early as next year.

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As reported by Sportsmail, talks are at an advanced stage and Domenicali is keen to add the African country to the list of races as a statement of F1's global reach.

Should negotiations prove successful, the race would be held at the 2.8-mile Kyalami circuit, north of Johannesburg. The last time it staged a grand prix was in 1993, but it was a regular race in the calendar through the Sixties, Seventies and early Eighties.

If plans go ahead, the venue - which holds 100,000 spectators - is said to only require a small tweak to its facilities to meet F1's specific needs.

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Domenicali will meet with Kyalami owner Toby Venter and chief executive Tom Hamilton after this weekend's Azerbaijan Grand Prix in Baku.

French Grand Prix and Belgian Grand Prix in danger

With Formula One looking to scale back on races in Europe, the French race held at Paul Ricard will reportedly be dropped. The report adds that the Belgian Grand Prix in Spa is also under threat, however, it may be retained on alternate years.

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Lewis Hamilton has previously backed the Kyalami plan, saying: "The place that I really feel is dear to my heart and most important to get a race back is in South Africa.

"There is a great following out there and I think it would be great to be able to highlight just how beautiful the motherland is."

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Chief executive Domenicali said: "On top of America, on top of China, there is a potential to be in Africa soon. There is a lot of interest there. That's an area that so far is missing in the geography of our calendar.

"It is up to us to try to find the right balance between the historical values of the old and famous European tracks and other destinations across the world.

"Various promoters have expiring agreements, and some of the current grands prix will probably no longer be part of the calendar."

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