formula 1 2024 calendar strengths and weaknesses

Formula 1 2024 Calendar And Ways To Make The Schedule Better

The FIA Formula 1 revealed its official schedule for the season. It is the most ambitious racing plan yet, as finally, it reaches 24 rounds in a year. Grinding for the drivers but exciting for the fans, let’s explore the Formula 1 2024 calendar, its strengths and weaknesses.

The Strengths of the Formula 1 Calendar 2024

The Traditional Start of the Season

The Formula 1 2024 season traditionally starts with its first race in Bahrain and launches on February 29. A week before the kick-off, the pre-season tests will take place for three days at the Sakhir. The good news is the season starts a bit earlier than previously.

Then, the championship immediately heads to a thrilling circuit at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit to hold the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix on March 7-9

The race at Albert Park in Australia takes over after two weeks, a worthy pause for the drivers. It has to be enough for races to have time to adapt because the flight duration between the two locations is over 14 hours. Australian Grand Prix 2024 takes place on March 22-24. 

RoundRaceCircuitDates
Preseason TestingBahrain Grand PrixBahrain International CircuitFebruary 21 – 23
1Bahrain Grand PrixBahrain International CircuitFebruary 29-March 2
2Saudi Arabian Grand PrixJeddah Corniche CircuitMarch 7-9
3Australian Grand PrixAlbert ParkMarch 22-24
4Japanese Grand PrixSuzukaApril 5-7
5Chinese Grand PrixShanghai International CircuitApril 19-21SPRINT
6Miami Grand PrixMiami International AutodromeMay 3-5SPRINT
7Emilia-Romagna Grand PrixImolaMay 17-19
8Monaco Grand PrixMonacoMay 24-26
9Canadian Grand PrixCircuit Gilles VilleneuveJune 7-9
10Spanish Grand PrixCircuit de CatalunyaJune 21-23
11Austrian Grand PrixRed Bull RingJune 28-30SPRINT
12British Grand PrixSilverstoneJuly 5-7
13Hungarian Grand PrixHungaroringJuly 19-21
14Belgian Grand PrixSpa-FrancorchampsJuly 26-28
15Dutch Grand PrixZandvoortAugust 23-25
16Italian Grand PrixMonzaAugust 30-Sep 1
17Azerbaijan Grand PrixBaku City CircuitSeptember 13-15
18Singapore Grand PrixSingaporeSeptember 20-22
19United States Grand PrixCircuit of the AmericasOctober 18-20SPRINT
20Mexican Grand PrixAutodromo Hermanos RodriguezOctober 25-27
21Brazilian Grand PrixInterlagosNovember 1-3SPRINT
22Las Vegas Grand PrixLas Vegas Street CircuitNovember 21-23
23Qatar Grand PrixLosail International CircuitNovember 29-December 1SPRINT
24Abu Dhabi Grand PrixYas MarinaDecember 6-8

The Key Changes

There are three differences between the F1 calendar of 2023 and 2024 seasons.

First, the races at Baku and Suzuka are switched with their places. Azerbaijan Grand Prix moved out from its traditional April dates and starts September 13, while the Japanese Grand Prix takes this slot and launches April 5.

As for the drivers, there is also a week’s pause between the rounds, while the flight duration from Australia to Japan is no less than 9 hours. 

Secondly, a ‘new face’ sets slot in the 2024 season and starts on April 19. The Chinese Grand Prix is back after over ten years of absence in Formula 1. The race in Shanghai debuted in 2004, while its last round was held in 2011.

However, after a week’s pause, Formula 1 heads to Miami. The race at Miami International Autodrome takes place on May 3-5.

Honestly, this is one of the grinding moments and the weakness of the calendar for the drivers and the teams, as the time between races is less than two weeks, while the flight from the destinations takes over 16 hours, which picks up a few days in addition to drivers adapting.  

The third change is Emilia Romagna’s back into the schedule. The race at Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari (Imola) joined Formula 1 in 2020 after a long absence. The iconic Grand Prix immediately became one of the famous F1 races. However, in the 2023 season, the race was called off due to flooding in the region. Over ten hours drivers and teams spend flying from Miami to Imola. 

formula 1 2024 schedule and logistic problems
Head to head! Red Bull Racing and Lotus Renault trucks” by Supermac1961 is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The Weaknesses of the Formula 1 Race Calendar 2024

The additional logistic loads

Thus, after the Italian Imola, Formula 1 heads to Monaco.

Logically, it would be better to continue the European loop instead of stopping in Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix, which would be better to set after Miami, because after Canada, the teams are going to Spain for the European destinations again, but for eight races, with its final in Baku. 

As for the summer break in F1, the coveted pause is scheduled between the Belgian and Dutch Grand Prix. The pause is to last for a month, but it starts after triple-header Spain-Austria-Great Britain. 

However, the Paddock will have another pause for a month after following the Singapore Grand Prix, which takes place on September 20-22, but since the United States Grand Prix, it starts another triple-header, United States-Mexican-Brazilian that runs from late October into November. And that is tough.

formula 1 las vegas race in the calendar
Photo by Julian Paefgen on Unsplash

Three Triple Headers in a row

The third triple-header starts with the Las Vegas Grand Prix in November after the trip to Brazil and includes Las Vegas-Qatar-Abu Dhabi. The race at Yas Marina traditionally stands as the end of the season, finishing on December 6-8.

In some terms, there are three triple headers in a row because a monthly pause after Singapore and just two weeks between Brazil and Las Vegas don’t bring the necessary rest. The main reason for that is logistical issues. Thus, if the first trice trip covers Europe, traveling from Las Vegas to Qatar lasts over 20 hours.

Therefore, drivers and teams warn such loads that lie on the people are already more than enough. Moreover, if the drivers travel in business class, or even more, using private jets, the rest of the team is forced to find more suitable ways, which takes more time. In some terms, you can call the Formula 1 race calendar for 2024 as a ‘deadlines’ schedule.’

F1 Sprints 2024 In The Racing Plan

Despite the rumors about eight and even ten sprints in the schedule, FIA Formula 1 approved six sprints only: Chinese, Miami, Austria, the United States, Brazilian, and Qatar Grands Prix.

However, the sprints in Miami and the newly appeared China race are the most interesting, while the Brazilian and Austrian sprints are the most spectacular. 

How could to improve the Formula 1 race calendar for 2024?

It seems to be obvious, but to reduce additional races first.

Thus, the Formula 1 2024 season includes a few chains that look a bit irrational.

For example, Imola-Miami-Monaco-Canada, or Azerbaijan-Singapore-US. 

Secondly, there are too many races in the Middle East because Formula 1 holds events in Qatar, Saudi, Bahrain, and Abu Dhabi. 

The third option is to switch races annually, for example, between Miami and Las Vegas. 

The fourth way to improve the schedule is to add a new destination with iconic roots.

Thus, the race in South Africa, which is just the plan, looks optimistic, as discovering worthy locations would improve the sport’s popularity overall. 

Also, besides the iconic Silverstone and Monza, other venues undeservedly lost the sport’s attention. The French and German Grand Prix are the best examples of the above. 

On the other hand, all the variations above require investing the money instead of receiving it.  

Italian Grand Prix in the F1 2024 schedule
Italian Grand Prix Monza – Podium and Ferrari Tifosi” by www.davidbaxendale.com is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

Takeaways

The Formula 1 2024 calendar has as many different races as possible. The variety is its great strength. Holding for 24 rounds per season makes the season the most ambitious yet. However, it has also a backside. 

Thus, gathering so many destinations and finding the best logistical options, Formula 1 organizes a few racing weekends without stops. Therefore, we have three triple-headers in the 2024 season, while the last one, Las Vegas-Qatar-Abu Dhabi, is the toughest due to the night race in Vegas and flying to Qatar, which lasts over 20 hours. 

To reduce such loads for the drivers and the teams, the FIA Formula 1 added two long pauses for a month. The first break holds after the European loop, while the other before the final triple header. However, in some terms, there is still not enough for teams, and drivers aren’t ready for some events. 

Despite the many options to shake up the Formula 1 racing schedule, most of these ways require the racing business to give away far more than it gains on its fees.

References