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F1 boss teases international Supercars plans

FORMULA 1 president and CEO Stefano Domenicali has publicly confirmed ongoing talks to have Supercars feature at grand prix races beyond Albert Park.

Supercars’ current owners RACE have trumpeted the prospect of tie-ups in Asia and the Middle East since taking over the Australian category in late 2021.

However, Domenicali has now given the first public indication from F1 that a ground-breaking deal could be on the cards.

Domenicali’s comments came in an interview on the Fox Sports broadcast at Albert Park, where he was asked directly if Supercars could feature at future F1 races in Asia.

The Singapore Grand Prix. Pic; Supplied

“Well, actually, we are working to make sure this could be possible in certain grands prix,” he replied. “So, for all the fans of Supercars, stay tuned. That’s what I can say.”

Supercars has only once previously supported an F1 race outside of Australia; the 2012 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at Yas Marina.

F1’s current schedule includes a return to Shanghai, China, for the first time since the pandemic, as well as races in Japan (Suzuka) and Singapore (Marina Bay).

The Singapore race has long been a target of Supercars, given its proximity to Australia and the popularity of the street circuit event.

Middle Eastern fixtures have also been touted for possible Supercars tie-ups, with grands prix held in Bahrain (Sakhir), Saudi Arabia (Jeddah), Qatar (Losail) and Abu Dhabi.

A non-championship race in support of the 2024 Qatar Grand Prix in December was mooted last year, although talk of that eventuating has grown silent.

The prospect of closer ties between Supercars and F1 comes despite the Australian class being shunted back to fourth-string status at Albert Park.

Supercars this year lost its dedicated pitlane to the F1-controlled Formula 2 category, which together with Formula 3 was brought to the event for the first time last year.

There is no ongoing deal for Supercars to appear at the AGP beyond this year and there are mixed opinions on whether it’s worth the class returning under the current conditions.

In addition to only being afforded slots for sprint races, the makeshift Supercars paddock only has limited access for team guests and is closed to the public.

The addition of F2 and F3 also left no room for Supercars teams to park their transporters on the inside of the circuit, while merchandise is no longer available at the track.

However, the booming popularity of F1 – which includes sell-out crowds at Albert Park – leave many believing Supercars must continue to retain a presence at the event.

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