Azerbaijan will host the European Grand Prix in 2016, with a race set to be held around the streets of Baku.
While there were efforts to get the race, the first grand prix to be held in the country, on the Formula 1 calendar for next season, organisers confirmed that Azerbaijan will now wait until 2016 to make its debut in the sport.
“I am delighted to officially announce that we have signed a contract to bring Formula 1 racing to Baku in 2016,” said Azerbaijan’s Minister of Youth and Sport, Azad Rahimov.
“Our location at the crossroads of eastern Europe and western Asia is a new frontier for Formula 1 racing.
“Azerbaijan is a modern European country that has established a reputation as a centre of sporting excellence.
“The deal to bring Formula 1 racing to Baku is a very significant new chapter in our ongoing success to attract the world’s largest sporting events to our country.”
The race will be held at an all-new street circuit around the capital city of Baku designed by Herman Tilke, with the start/finish straight expected to incorporate the city’s famous Azadliq Square.
“We are very happy that Baku has joined the Formula 1 family,” added F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone.
“This will be a street race, which will pass through interesting and picturesque parts of Baku. The event will meet the current Formula 1 criteria.”
Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons