Sergio Pérez, who turned 32 last January, made his F1 debut in 2011 in a 19-race season and, since then, has witnessed first-hand a process of global expansion of the championship calendar, reaching new markets, which has increased the number of grand prizes that are held each season.
A clear example has been given in the United States , where Formula 1 will contest its first Miami GP next weekend and recently announced a return to Las Vegas for 2023.
For many years, the calendar for motorsport’s top flight was between 14 and 17 races, while in 2004 and 2005 it exceeded that number for the first time at 18 and 19 respectively, before returning to 17 in 2009.
Since then, the trend has continued to rise, reaching 20 grands prix for the first time in 2012, and then going on to 21 appointments in 2016, while last year a total of 22 rounds were completed. In this 2022, if a replacement is finally found for the canceled Russian Grand Prix, there will be 23 races.
The current Concord Agreement, in force until 2025, specifies a maximum of 24 rounds, but recently Stefano Domenicali , CEO of F1, went further and assured that “there is potential to reach 30” due to the growing interest in the championship around the world.
Checo Pérez spoke about the increase in races on the calendar in an exclusive interview with the American publication The Athletic , when he was asked what was the most positive thing he saw and what worried him the most about the future of Formula 1.
“What makes me very optimistic is the fact that it is growing a lot. I see that in any part of the world, it is noticeable in the streets, people recognize you much more, they are more interested in our category. There is a very large demand “, replied the Red Bull driver.
“But on the other hand, having too many races is something you can’t afford, at least for me. Right now we have a lot of races, simulator sessions before each round, events with partners and so on. So basically we don’t have time to us and for our families. I have a couple of small children (with a third on the way). I think that if the calendar (continues to expand) more, then surely I will not continue, “concluded Pérez .
Sergio Pérez, Red Bull Racing RB18
Photo by: Carl Bingham / Motorsport Images