Brazil hopes to move its slot on the world's Formula One calendar to a dedicated racetrack at Rio de Janeiro which will be named after Ayrton Senna, the celebrated Brazilian racing car driver who died in 1994.
Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro has signed an agreement with Rio de Janeiro’s mayor and governor that paves the way for the racetrack to be built on land ceded by the armed forces in Deodoro, where 2016 Olympic competitions including rugby, basketball and mountain biking took place.
The track is expected to be ready by early 2020, with the estimated value of the concession to build and operate the Rio F1 course for 35 years pegged at US$177 million, according to information from Rio’s city hall. It estimates the track will have an economic impact of US$157 million annually.
The Brazilian race is usually held at Interlagos in Sao Paulo, and Bolsonaro said that the venue is no longer viable. “Rio de Janeiro wins and so does Brazil, without any public money.”
“The hotel sector is certainly happy, there will be 7,000 direct and indirect jobs that will stay forever,” Bolsonaro said, without clarifying whether the FIA racing organization participated in the decision.