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Italian Grand Prix set to remain at Monza for next three years

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The Italian Grand Prix is set to remain at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza until 2019 following an announcement from Formula 1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone and the Automobile Club d’Italia on Friday.

Monza has hosted all but one Italian Grand Prix since the formation of the F1 world championship in 1950, but faced an uncertain future after negotiations over a new contract stalled.

Ecclestone stressed that he would hesitate to find an alternative venue for the race if an agreement could not be reached on hosting fees, leading to discussions with Imola, the former host of the San Marino Grand Prix.

In a press conference on Friday afternoon, Ecclestone and ACI president Angelo Sticchi Damiani confirmed that a deal had been agreed to keep the race at Monza, although it is yet to be signed off.

“Regretfully, legally we can’t sign it here, but more important is that we have an agreement thanks to our lawyers and we are getting all the small details sorted,” Ecclestone said.

“There is no problem in having the race here. The contract will be for three years but I hope we are here for 100 years.”

Damiani has long expressed a desire to keep the Italian Grand Prix at Monza, revealing back in June that a breakthrough in negotiations came around the Monaco weekend in May.

While Imola has enjoyed significant upgrades since it last hosted F1 back in 2006, Monza’s contract extension is likely to be very well received throughout the paddock given its history and high-speed nature.

IndyCar teams with NASCAR on IMS road course doubleheader in 2021

IndyCar NASCAR doubleheader 2021
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The NTT IndyCar Series will be sharing Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the NASCAR Cup Series in a race weekend doubleheader for the second consecutive season, but both series will be on the road course in August 2021.

IMS announced Wednesday that IndyCar will hold an Aug. 14, 2021 race on its 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. It’ll be a day before NASCAR’s premier series runs the same layout for the first time after the Brickyard 400 was contested on the 2.5-mile oval for the first time in 27 years.

This season’s rescheduling of the IndyCar GMR Grand Prix to July 4, 2019 (a day before the Brickyard 400) led to the first NASCAR-IndyCar doubleheader weekend. The Xfinity Series also raced on the IMS road course for the first time July 4 after the IndyCar race ended.

INDYCAR AT IMS THIS WEEKEND: Harvest GP schedule, entry lists

IndyCar will be holding its second race weekend this year at the IMS road course Friday and Saturday with the Harvest GP.

“Our first NASCAR-INDYCAR weekend was a big success last July, with positive feedback from
our loyal fans who watched the races on NBC and from the drivers, teams and participants
involved,” IMS president Douglas Boles said in a statement. “The Xfinity Series’ debut on the IMS road course provided exactly the kind of thrilling action from the green to checkered flags that we anticipated, so we know the teams and drivers of the Cup Series will put on a great show as they turn left and right for the first time at IMS.

“We can’t wait to welcome back fans to see NASCAR and INDYCAR together during this
exciting weekend as we add another memorable chapter in the long, storied history of the
Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”

It also will mark the first NASCAR Cup-IndyCar doubleheader with a crowd as fans weren’t permitted at IMS in July because of the novel coronvavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Over the course of Wednesday, NASCAR is releasing its 36-race slate for next season. IndyCar has yet to release its full 2021 schedule.