Lewis Hamilton has begged F1 to keep Monaco on the calendar as the track’s future is pulled into question with rumours of the addition of several more tracks over the next few years. Miami joined the calendar this year, and Las Vegas will be a fond addition in 2023. But Hamilton is keen to keep what he believes is the “crown jewel” of the calendar.
Fans are starting to worry that more traditional tracks such as Monaco and those found in Europe, and it’s likely that drivers are doing the same as the tracks come to the end of their contracts with the sport. Fortunately, Automobile Club de Monaco has now confirmed that they are in talks to renegotiate its contract with F1. But Lewis Hamilton has further confirmed that he doesn’t want it to go anywhere, but isn’t necessarily a fan of the racing:
“It’s one of the crown jewels of our sport. So I’m not really sure it would be great to lose it.
“There are good bits… I guess that the difficult part is that the racing itself is not that spectacular.”
He was keen to add that it isn’t easy to get the most out of the track:
“Everyone that goes enjoys it. It is a prime location.
“Adjusting the track is not easy because it’s the second smallest country in the world so we don’t have a lot of space there.
“Many of us live in Monaco. But it is just that iconic status it has, the history that it has, that is so appealing to drivers but also to those that are watching.”
Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren’s Australian driver, also had his say on the location, admitting that while he loves the idea of adding more races in new places, he agrees with Hamilton’s sentiment:
“Monaco is special.
“The thing is, I love the addition of some of these new circuits, new cities that we’re going to.
“I’m all for it because it’s also new experiences and engaging another audience which is fun, and it keeps the sport growing.
“As Lewis touched on earlier, it’s sharing the sport with more of the globe, and ultimately sharing our passion with more people.
“There are those core F1 venues and circuits such as Monaco. It’s a special weekend.”
Again, he also agreed that while Monaco is steeped with interest, it’s not the greatest to race at:
“It’s one of the trickiest circuits on which to overtake.
“I’m not sure it provides the ultimate viewing experience on a Sunday but the weekend experience, and just everything that is Monaco, is special and unique.
“Winning it or not, going there as an F1 driver and having that and experiencing all the emotions that go with competing in Monaco, it’s unique.
“I’m very, very happy to have that, and have experienced that in my career. I guess I would wish the next generation to also experience that because it is special.”