Contract extension granted for F1 Australian GP

A contract extension has been agreed between Formula 1 and the Australian Grand Prix, that will see the race held in Melbourne until the end of the 2025 season.

Next year will be the 25th hosting of the race at Albert Park, and will take place on 15 March.

Formula 1’s Chairman and CEO Chase Carey said: “We are pleased to have renewed our partnership with the city of Melbourne, which will now host the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix until at least 2025.

“The decision to extend the current relationship for a further two years stems from the fact this event has proved to be a resounding success for the capital of Victoria, for Australia and indeed around the world, proving immensely popular with fans and those who work in Formula 1.

“Working along with our partner, the Australian Grand Prix Corporation, we plan to make the Australian Grand Prix even more exciting and spectacular, as a sporting event and as a form of entertainment. Today’s announcement follows on from last week’s, relating to the British Grand Prix and is proof that more and more promoters are sharing our long-term vision for the future of Formula 1.

“We cannot wait to be back in Melbourne, from 12 to 15 March next year to celebrate the 25th anniversary of this race being held there and continuing a relationship which will also allow us to celebrate at least 30 years in the city in 2025.”

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W Series reveals prize fund, initial 2020 plans

W Series has announced the full list of prize money it will award in its inaugural season, as well as initial details about the 2020 season.

The winner will receive US$500,000, and the prize fund extends down to the final four places, and the reserve drivers, who will each receive US$7500.

The top 12 finishers will automatically be invited to compete again next year, and those below that threshold will be given the chance to reapply for the 2020 season.

Although no details have been given about next year’s application process, a driver who didn’t compete this year must hold an FIA International C licence (as a minimum) to be eligible to apply.

The W Series will also be eligible for Super Licence points next year and the FIA is currently determining how many points will be awarded and how many drivers will receive them.

Barberá to return to BSB in place of Irwin

Héctor Barberá will return to the British Superbike championship, for the third time this season, with JG Speedfit Kawasaki at Snetterton this weekend.

Barberá will replace Glenn Irwin who is currently suffering from a virus, which is giving him partial vision.

Team Owner Pete Extance said: “Héctor did a superb job for us earlier in the season, the whole team really enjoyed working with him and we can see the potential for Héctor in BSB.

“As always, new riders to the series have to learn the new circuits which are so different to what they have been used to, but we look forward to welcoming him back this weekend. We also want to wish Glenn a speedy recovery from his illness.”

Lotterer joins Jani at Porsche

Following the announcement of his departure from DS Techeetah, Porsche has announced the signing of André Lotterer alongside Neel Jani for their debut season of Formula E.

I’m really looking forward to competing for Porsche in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship in the 2019/2020 season.” said Lotterer. “I have been part of the Porsche family since 2017 and have lots of great memories of joint successes – particularly when working with Neel. We drove together in the Porsche LMP1 Team in 2017, and drove for Rebellion Racing in the WEC these past two years.

“It’s great that we will now be the driver pairing for the Porsche Formula E Team. I’m looking forward to the new task and to the future collaboration with the team.”

Porsche will become the seventh manufacturer to join Formula E. They also join Mercedes in entering the series for the first time.

Vice President Porsche Motorsport Fritz Enzinger added: “Signing André for the second Porsche Formula E cockpit is definitely the right choice. He has been a Porsche works driver for three years and knows the team and Neel really well. And we can only benefit from the experience that André will bring from the past two Formula E seasons.

“Neel and André make the perfect driver pairing for Porsche’s works entry into Formula E. We are looking forward to entering our maiden season in the ABB FIA Formula E Championship for the 2019/2020 season with this strong driver pairing.”