Reports: Monza closing in on new F1 contract

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The Autodromo Nazionale Monza is poised to sign a new contract to host the Italian Grand Prix according to recent reports.

Monza has hosted all but one Italian Grand Prix since 1950, and is widely regarded as one of the most iconic and legendary circuits on the Formula 1 calendar.

Its future as the host of the race been thrown into doubt recently due to dwindling attendances and a recent change in tax legislation that affected the funding of the grand prix.

Bernie Ecclestone said last year that the race had been “disastrous for us from a commercial point of view”, and with Imola reportedly bidding to become the next host, it appeared that Monza’s time in F1 would end upon the expiration of its contract in 2016.

However, according to recent reports, a breakthrough has been made in negotiations that could see a new contract be signed as early as next month.

According to a report from La Gazzetta dello Sport, the Italian government has approved a tax-free investment that will allow the race to remain at Monza.

“We can do it by early September,” governor Roberto Maroni said. “With this tax free investment we can close the deal with [Bernie] Ecclestone.

“The grand prix has to stay at Monza, because Monza is Monza.”

Maroni also appeared on Radio Monte Carlo earlier this week, and said that there was a 90% chance of the race remaining at Monza before explaining the change in legislation.

“90%, the grand prix is saved,” he said.

“The good news is that finally, after many attempts, the senate has approved a change of legislation, allowing the Lombardy Region to clear the Monza circuit from paying €10m of taxes.

“This money can be put towards saving the grand prix and renewing the agreement.”