The Grand Prix in the Netherlands will make its return to Formula 1 as from next year, 35 years since the last time the race was held there.
The race will be taking place at the historic Zandvoort circuit, the same track where the Netherlands’ Formula 1 championship race was held for 33 years between 1952 and 1985. Heineken has been confirmed to be the race’s title sponsor.
The news was given by F1 CEO Chase Carey at a press conference where he announced the newest addition to the 2020 F1 calendar.
Zandvoort. We're coming.
The #DutchGP is back 🇳🇱
— Formula 1 (@F1) May 14, 2019
“We’re thrilled to be here today,” started Carey. “There’s been a lot of anticipation about this potential event so it’s great to be able to address it straight on.”
He went on to give three reasons why the race at Zandvoort is so special.
“We have an incredible history at Zandvoort,” he said. “We raced here last 35 years ago. We’ve had some of our great races here, some of our greatest heroes have raced here and really this track is a tremendously important part of Formula 1.
“The second reason is really the excitement and the passion that exists here in Holland. Holland geographically is a small country but there’s no question that the heart, the passion is second to none and I think the energy in Holland is captivating. Obviously, Max Verstappen has helped get another dimension to that. But there’s just a love for this sport that attracts us here. When I go to some of the tracks and see the sea of orange that exists, it’s incredibly special.
Happy to be on the podium 💪 After a hectic start, our race pace was good and we were competitive. Thanks @redbullracing and @HondaRacingF1, and also all fans for voting me Driver of the Day 🙌 #KeepPushing 🇪🇸 #SpanishGP pic.twitter.com/hz52iz6Im5
— Max Verstappen (@Max33Verstappen) May 12, 2019
“And I think the third reason is it’s great to bring a new race to Europe. It’s not a new race obviously because we raced here 35 years ago but for a generation of fans, this is going to be a new race. We are a global sport, we have half a billion fans around the world and growing, and it’s no question the global base of this sport is incredibly important to us. We’re excited to add new races like the one in Vietnam that we’ll also add next year. But Europe’s our home. Europe’s foundation. Europe’s the base on which we built this sport. And so to bring the sport back to a great track in Europe is incredibly important to us,” concluded the F1 CEO.
The seaside race is the second addition to next year’s calendar, with the Vietnam GP having been the first new addition that was confirmed by Formula 1. The Vietnam race is set to be held during the month of April in Hanoi.
According to Dutch GP sporting director and former F1 driver Jan Lammers, there will be changes to the Zandvoort circuit so that it can meet the FIA required standards as well as the wishes of Formula 1.
“To meet the wishes of Formula 1 and the required standards of the FIA the circuit and infrastructure will be modernized within a few areas, with the work completed well ahead of the race in 2020,” said Lammers.
“In addition, the municipality of Zandvoort has recently invested heavily to improve access to the municipality and the circuit.”