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Christian Horner

Horner: F1 not far from 'breaking point' with 'brutal' travel schedule

Red Bull team boss Christian Horner believes the expanding Formula 1 calendar has reached its "breaking point" with the amount of races in 2023.

Christian Horner
To news overview © Getty Images/Red Bull Contentpool

With the cancellation of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix and the Chinese GP earlier this year, the 2023 Formula 1 calendar is reduced down to 22 races.

There was originally meant to be a record-breaking number of races, with 24 being perceived as the 'maximum' amount of events that could take place.

This is due to the additions of the Las Vegas and Miami Grands Prix within the last two seasons, owing to the popularity of F1 in the United States.

Christian Horner, who became Team Principal for Red Bull in 2005 when there were just 19 races on the calendar, thinks that Formula 1 is already at a "breaking point" and has branded the current mileage covered in a season by the teams as "insane."

"You do reach a point where you wonder where you get saturation, and 23 races is an insane amount of racing and mileage that we have to cover in a season," he said at the Financial Times: Future of the Car conference.

"I think it's better to have competition for the existing venues than to just keep adding more and more, because you do get to a point, a breaking point, which I don't feel we're that far from."

Difficult to say 'no' to new racing venues

Beyond 24 races, F1 teams raised the idea of making staff rotation mandatory to stop them from being pushed to their limits.

Horner said his ideal amount of races would be reduced to 18 in a year, but believes it is important for F1 to continue its expansion to new venues.

"The problem is Stefano [Domenicali] turns up – and they play the same trick every year – it's like, 'Oh, maybe we can't go to Silverstone' or 'Monza's looking a bit wobbly' and so on," he explained.

"So he says 'Well we've got to protect one and we can't lose Monaco, we can't lose Monza and we can't lose Silverstone' And then he says 'What about Las Vegas?' Okay we'll go to Vegas. 'What about Miami?' Yeah alright, we'll go there too.

"Then they just keep coming up with great venues and great races, and it's difficult to say no."

The Red Bull team boss highlights the "commitment" that fans need to make to follow a season at home, while everyone who works in F1 has to adhere to the "brutal" travel schedule.

"It's brutal, that travel schedule. I think you get to a point where, [at] 23 Sundays a year, for people to go and take two hours out of their Sunday afternoon or evening it's a big commitment to follow a whole season," he added.

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