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China renews its F1 deal for next three years

By Owen Fishwick | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-09-29 17:01

China has agreed a new three-year deal with Liberty Media to host a round of the Formula One World Championship, according to Shanghai Juss Sports Development, the organizers of China's F1 Grand Prix.

The Shanghai race is on the 2018 race calendar, subject to confirmation, though that appears to have been made, according to a press release from the management company on Sept 29.

The timing of the announcement is particularly poignant as an affirmation from Chinese authorities that they intend to push ahead with their motorsport and international sporting event programs. This comes against the backdrop of this weekend's F1 Grand Prix in Malaysia, which will be the last time for it to be staged in the Southeast Asian nation.

Chairman and CEO of Liberty Media, Chase Kelly, expressed his appreciation for the success of China's F1 Grand Prix, saying that he long believes the sport can continue to develop in the country.

"We are very pleased to be able to witness the conclusion of the agreement, and the F1 Grand Prix as a fixed round for the F1 World Championships will continue to be held in Shanghai," Chase said. "The great country of China has shown we are firmly convinced that there is still a lot of undeveloped potential here, and that is why this new contract is part of our development strategy, especially in the global sector.

According to the announcement of the contract renewal, the 15th F1 China Grand Prix will be held on April 15, 2018. Therefore, the 2018 F1 Bahrain Grand Prix will be held on April 8. This date change however, needs to be ratified by the FIA World Motor Sport Council.

The Shanghai International Circuit in Jiading district, Shanghai has hosted a round of the F1 World Championship since 2004.

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