Vietnam race confirmed for 2020 F1 calendar


Get April 2020 in your calendars, F1 fans, because that's when the inaugural Vietnamese Grand Prix will take place. It's the first race to be announced under the Liberty Media ownership of F1, and will occur on a 5.565km street circuit in the centre of Hanoi.

The decision is said to be part of F1's desire to broaden the appeal of the sport across Asia. There are of course races already in Japan, China and Singapore, but compare the amount of Asian races there are with European ones - especially with population sizes taken into account - and clearly there's room for growth.


The promoter Vingroup has signed a multi-year deal to host the race, which will also be used to promote the company's VinFast range of cars. Its CEO Nguyen Viet Quang said: "Vingroup wants to bring this race to Vietnam because of the general benefits to the society such as more jobs will be created, the infrastructure of Hanoi will be upgraded, and other bigger worldwide events will be encouraged to take place in Vietnam."

F1's CEO Chase Carey added: "We are thrilled to be here in Hanoi, one of the most exciting cities in the world right now with such a rich history and an incredible future ahead of it. This is the perfect formula for Grand Prix racing and I look forward to this becoming a real highlight of the F1 calendar."

As for the circuit itself, Hanoi will be the fourth street race in the F1 calendar (alongside Monaco, Singapore and Azerbaijan) and feature 22 turns in its five and a half kilometres. It has been designed by Tilke - bear with us - and so takes its inspiration from other circuits, but will also be semi permanent, using both existing and purpose built roads.


You can see a full breakdown of the layout here, but a point of interest already is "a real desire to steer away from humdrum 90-degree road-junction type corners and foster a layout that facilitates wheel-to-wheel racing". The first two turns are inspired by the opening of a Nurburgring GP lap, there are esses like there are at Suzuka, and a 1,500m straight. That's in addition to another two of 800m and 675m at other points around the lap.

Now while F1 will of course be aiming to create this impression, there seems plenty to be encouraged by about the Vietnam race. Look, too, at some of the drama there's been at Baku since its introduction, perhaps the closes equivalent to Hanoi. Are you excited to see F1 head to Vietnam? Is there a location you'd have liked to see a race that hasn't featured yet? There's surely going to be quite a discussion on this...



P.H. O'meter

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