Hockenheim 'could win back place' on F1 calendar

Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W10 leads behind the FIA Safety Car
© XPB 

The German Grand Prix could return to the Formula 1 calendar in the future, with Hockenheim interested in hosting the event once more - provided the figures add up.

The iconic Hockenheimring shared hosting rights with the Nurburgring between 2007 and 2014, and then held the race every other year until 2019. The Nurburgring hosted a one-off Eifel GP in 2020 in a season impacted by COVID

The return of the German GP - once a highlight of the F1 season especially during the dominant years of Michael Schumacher at the top of the sport - has not been on the agenda in recent years.

"I’m disappointed and also sad that we don’t have a German Grand Prix at the moment," Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali said last year. "I don’t see any real interest from Germany in becoming part of the Formula 1 calendar again.

"That’s a shame and actually hard to believe," he added at the time. "I hope this will change again in the future."

Many of the sport's best known traditional circuits have come under pressure to keep their place in recent years, with more venues around the world including Miami, Saudi Arabia and Las Vegas bidding to stage an F1 event.

"We could easily race on 30 different circuits, and to see that nobody from Germany is ringing the bell is regrettable," Domenicali lamented.

In the end, Hockenheim terminated its role when the sums simply didn't add up. The last race there in 2019 had to be financially supported by title sponsorship from Mercedes.

But now there's new hope for a return to Germany, with Hockenheim’s circuit director Jorn Teske this week telling national broadcaster Sport1: “We very much want Formula 1 to come back to Germany.

"We owe our global fame to the sport and are really doing everything we can to come back," he continued. “We know how important the premier class is for a circuit, and also for the region around it.

“We don’t have to make a profit, but we can’t make a loss either," he said, mindful of the financial side of any return. “Formula 1 must not ruin us so we have to find a way to get [it] back together.

"One possible solution to ease the financial burden would be a collaboration with another circuit.

“We are definitely open to organising a race once every two years. If there were a rotation with, say, the Nürburgring, that would be great for the German fans, and also for myself.

Nico Hulkenberg (GER), Renault Sport F1 Team 28.07.2019. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 11, German Grand Prix, Hockenheim, Germany, Race Day. - www.xpbimages.com, EMail: requests@xpbimages.com - copy of publication required for printed pictures. Every used picture is fee-liable. © Copyright: Charniaux / XPB Images

The Nurburgring is widely seen as out of the running to be the long-term solo host of the German GP because of its remote location for attracting fans, and it also struggling financially.

A decline in the number of German drivers had also made the event less financially appealing to organisers.

In 2010, seven of the 24 drivers on the grid were from Germany including Schumacher, Sebastian Vettel and Nico Rosberg.

But now this year there's only one German driver remaining, with Nico Hulkenberg at Haas in place of compatriot Nick Schumacher who is now a reserve driver for the Mercedes team, while Vettel is permanently retired.

The arrival of Audi on the grid in 2026 could fire up some German passion for F1, having previously indicated a wish to develop future German motorsport talent to put in the cockpit if possible.

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter