Although the 2019 season's calendar is not yet confirmed, there have been a lot of speculations around it. Liberty Media, as opposed to Bernie Ecclestone, prefers to deliver a ready product instead of a draft of how the season might look like. But with the information flooding from everywhere, we can expect, once again like in this one, 21 races in the next season. Some old races will be gone, with some new ones coming into the calendar. The newest addition to the F1 race destinations will be a street track in Miami, which will most likely take place in the middle of October. It has been said that the commission of the city wants to negotiate a 20 year plan for the GP. It will, in a way, replace the German Gp, which from next year on won't be in the calendar anymore, since the administration did not sign a new contract with the owners of the Formula One. Since this season we have a new-old race, the French GP taking place on the Paul Ricard track. This means that with the expectation of 21 races next year, the F1 will race around the world from the middle of March till presumably even the 1st of December, making the winter break period shorter than it currently is now. Although it means a long time of entertainment and excitement for the fans, it might be a huge challenge for the drivers. We must remember that each and every weekend is very exhausting for the drivers, and a shorter winter break means a shorter period of time to recover for them. To think that some suggest to have 22 or even 23 races per season (additional races in China and US have been proposed) seems a little bit like a crazy idea. The boss of Renault Sport F1 Cyril Abiteboul believes that having a season with fewer races will be more beneficial for the image and value of F1. As he said: We are already way above what should be the figure for something special. We need to convey a message of pride, of motivation, of energy. With the calendar that we have now, the enthusiasm is not the same as when we were only traveling 15 times per year. If we don't have that energy, it is going to be very difficult to convey that externally. It is almost becoming routine. It should not be a day-to-day job. We've tipped that balance, so we need to be extremely careful.”
On the other hand, Gunther Steiner has expressed his concerns towards the costs that a 22-23 races season would generate in logistics and more. He said: “To go to races costs us and F1 a hell of a lot of money, so they need to make sure we have income as well, not just expenditure. Just growing it for the sake of growing it, there is no point. The balance is between 20 and 22 races maximum. Going over, there is no return for it."
Although I understand, but personally not agree with the point of Abiteboul, and somewhat agree with the point of Steiner, the biggest concern is, once again, the health and safety for drivers. Although many will say that it is their job, and they are paid to perform on the highest level, we need to understand that they are not Gods, but humans, and absolutely no one can perform at a 100% every time they will race. A 22-23 races season will increase the risk of injuries and crashes, and we must remember that although risk is always counted into a sport like this, it is absolutely unacceptable to risk the physical as well as mental health of drivers for the sake of one more race.
How will the future seasons look like? For even a full, official 2019 season calendar we still need to wait. In the meantime, let us know on which side you are on: would you prefer more races, or do you think a fewer will do? Let us know it the comments section below or over on twitter.