Qatar’s Losail International Circuit will join the 2021 Formula 1 schedule, the sport announced on Thursday. The additional 10-race deal will see the venue host F1 from 2023.
Formula One has filled its sole remaining spot on its 2021 schedule with Qatar joining the the 2021 calendar. The race will take place between the 19th – 21st November, with Ooredoo – the international communications company as the title sponsor. The addition of Qatar means that the 2021 F1 season will end with a three-part Middle Eastern run of races to the 2021 season.
The Qatar cirucit is located just outside in the town of Lusail, north of Doha, Qatar. The track is 5.380 km in length, with a main straight of just over a kilometre at 1,068 metres. It is surrounded by artificial grass to stop the sand encroaching on the track.
“We are very pleased to welcome Qatar to the Formula 1 calendar this season and for the longer term from 2023,” added Stefano Domenicali, President and CEO of Formula 1. „The Qatar Motor & Motorcycle Federation and Authorities have been incredible and have moved at great speed to ensure the race can take place this season at the Losail Circuit, famous to many as the host of MotoGP.”
“We have shown that we can continue to adapt and there is huge interest in our sport and the hope from many locations to have a Grand Prix. The huge effort from all the teams, F1 and the FIA has made it possible to deliver a 22 race calendar, something that is very impressive during a challenging year and something we can all be proud of.”
Commenting on the announcement, FIA President Jean Todt said: “I congratulate Formula One, the Qatar Motor & Motorcycle Federation and the Qatari authorities, who have worked tirelessly, to quickly and efficiently make the inaugural Grand Prix in Qatar happen in these challenging times. The Losail International Circuit, which will welcome the race, has been working closely with us to ensure they are fully prepared for this momentous occasion.
„We are very proud of this collective achievement. I thank the QMMF President Abdulrahman Al-Mannai and His Excellency Salah bin Ghanem Al Ali, Minister of Culture and Sports for their involvement. This commitment to F1 for the long-term, as well as the organisation of the 2022 FIFA World Cup and many other international events, is another example of Qatar’s strong passion for sport,” Todt concluded.
As for the Covid-19 situation, Formula One communicated that it „will continue to travel this season with stringent safety measures that have allowed us to travel safely this season. Since our restart last season we have conducted over 150,000 tests with 124 positive cases a rate of 0.08% and alongside this a significant proportion of the F1 community has been vaccinated already. We will continue to operate in a way that protects the safety of our personnel and the communities we visit.”