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Formula 1 has announced a significant shift for the Spanish Grand Prix, relocating from Barcelona to Madrid in 2026. This move aims to enhance the overall F1 experience and Fan engagement. Over the years Spanish Grand Prix has witnessed great races of great drivers such as Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen.

The “Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya” has seen some eye-opening moments in 2023 with Max being the only driver to secure a pole position, a podium, and the fastest lap record with 1:16.330. The circuit length is around 2.894 miles, while to complete the race it takes 190.908 miles (laps may vary).

While everything was going on point, What aspects made F1 decide to switch tracks from 2026? Is Madrid going to be a permanent track from 2026 onwards?

Why Did The Formula 1 Spanish Grand Prix Move To Madrid?

In the recent talks between F1 stakeholders and officials in Madrid, formula 1 is set to construct a cutting-edge track in the Northeast of Madrid, around the IFEMA exhibition space. This newly designed circuit will include both Street and non-Street circuit sections, creating a vibrant and unique racing experience for drivers as well as fans.

However, it’s important to note that the Barcelona authorities are actively engaged in discussions regarding the future of their race circuit. The track in Barcelona has faced criticism over the years, often due to the lack of on-track action due to the difficulty drivers face in overtaking.

The facility lacked major infrastructure resulting limiting number of fans. Its location in the suburbs of Montmelo, approximately 45 minutes from the city center with only one train service, has made it challenging for fans to attend the event.

F1 claims that the primary reason for relocating the track to Madrid is its easy accessibility as the track is connected to the nearest airport and railway stations.

Additionally, it stands out as one of the most sustainable tracks, playing a crucial role in achieving the goal of reaching net-zero carbon by 2030.

What Does The Track Comprise Of?

The Madrid track, stretching over 5.47km, is planned with 20 corners, and it’s expected that drivers may complete a qualifying lap in just 1 minute and 32 seconds.

The venue plans to host a maximum of 110,000 fans daily and aims to expand its capacity to welcome 140,000 fans in the future.

The F1 stated “From the very first suggestion to where we’ve ended up, there’s been about 24 track models, but then there’s been numerous sub-model investigations and different details as well,” explains F1’s Head of Vehicle Performance Craig Wilson, who has been involved in the process from the start. “We’ve now got a concept that we’re happy to proceed development with and we’re very excited to see it take shape.”

Read more:F1 2024 Schedule: Dates, Calendar, Driver Line-Up, Testing Schedule, Grand Prix & More Details.

It’s a layout that features everything from fast sweeps to tight chicanes, and lengthy straights to short bursts of the throttle, offering a varied experience for those behind the wheel. “I think it will be a good challenge for the drivers,” adds Wilson.

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Gaurang is a writer at the SportsOrbit covering articles related to F1,Gaurang was 14 when he cared more about playing football than studying. But when COVID hit and he had to stay home, he discovered Formula 1. It immediately caught his interest. Since then, he's been really into Formula 1, watching every race and learning all about it. He still loves football, but now he's also a big fan of Formula 1, especially Lewis Hamilton. Even though he loves racing, he still looks up to Cristiano Ronaldo as his idol.