Former world champion Damon Hill hopes that Formula 1 does not go in the direction of Formula E's track policy with street/city tracks, which, in his opinion, should definitely leave room for classic asphalt strips.
In recent years, it has become clear that Liberty Media gives major prizes to popular cities that attract tourists. Recently, Madrid won the right to organize the race with a track called “hybrid” in advertisements, which will have built-up parts, but will be built in the city center and will also include street sections.
While Madrid has been given the green light, it has been suggested that Osaka could also enter contention for the Japanese Grand Prix with a similar location, but there have been previous articles about creating a street track in London and Nice as well.
The trend is divisive: while some people are happy with tracks that generate more “exciting” races on paper and are set in a “vibrating environment”, others consider them monotonous and unimaginative, especially compared to the classics. Damon Hill, the 1996 champion, understands both aspects, but has warned Formula 1 against moving towards Formula E, which operates almost exclusively in urban locations.
“I like watching the races and seeing the developments” He began. “The only thing I would add to the Madrid announcement is that there are new engine regulations coming in 2026 (when the race starts) and there are rumors that cars with these engines will not be able to perform consistently.”
He continued: “So, with this step, they can move towards narrower and more winding tracks, for example in the direction of Formula E. There, the management decided to move the races to city centers, to fenced tracks. I hope all this does not mean that the performance of the cars will decrease.” Compared to current cars, so there will be some compromises.” he added.
“In Las Vegas, Max Verstappen was very upset about the nature of the circuits and what circuits he wanted to race on. However, the situation is that Formula One has to adapt to the expectations placed on it from the point of view of car production and governments that are also dealing with environmental issues.” “I hope the track in Madrid will be exciting. The main thing is to have good races. Then everyone will be happy.” Highlight.
Hill noted during the interview that he was aware that urban circuits could provide a better fan experience, but classic circuits like Spa are part of Formula One's character. At the same time, he also pointed out that even at the dawn of car racing, there were many places on the streets and cities, so the trend is actually not entirely new, but rather frequent.
“They want variety, and in general it's good to have a track close to the city centre. This enhances the experience that a Grand Prix can provide. But you have to keep Spa and the other classics. As for Spa, it was originally also a street track. It was formed by roads connecting the cities of the Ardennes. This is how racing was originally done. Many locations were like this at the dawn of motorsport, Formula 1. So this is nothing new. It is a kind of track within the city. But this is in The Reality of How Motorsport Began Closed, specialized tracks like Barcelona were actually a novelty“He finished.