MAY 9, 2019
Rio set to replace Interlagos as Brazil GP host
Rio de Janeiro is on track to replace Interlagos as host of the 2020 Brazilian grand prix.
We reported two weeks ago that F1 commercial boss Sean Bratches wrote to Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro in support of the move from Sao Paulo.
The race would take place on a new track in Deodoro, a neighbourhood in Rio's west zone. Bratches said in Baku: "I can confirm the letter."
Now, president Bolsonaro has announced that Rio will indeed host Formula 1 in 2020.
"The Rio de Janeiro circuit will be finished six or seven months after the start of construction work," he told reporters.
Interlagos claims it has a valid contract for 2020, but Bolsonaro said the circuit is collapsing under "huge debts".
"There is a contract in place to hold the Brazilian grand prix in Sao Paulo until 2020 and both sides continue to honour their commitments," Interpub, the company that organisers the Interlagos race, said in a statement.
And the Sao Paulo city government added: "Talks are even going ahead to extend the current contract."