The Autódromo Internacional do Algarve (AIA) is one of the candidate circuits to host the next pre-season tests of teams competing in the Formula 1 World Championship in motorsport, admitted the circuit administrator in an interview with the Lusa agency.
Paulo Pinheiro admits negotiations, with the answer to be known before October 25, the date of the Portuguese Grand Prix.
"We are trying, but we already realized that it is not an easy process. On top of that, the number of tests will be reduced", lamented Paulo Pinheiro.
Traditionally, Barcelona is the circuit that hosts the tests and Paulo Pinheiro considers it the "easiest for the teams, because it is staying where they already are".
"The most important part of the tests is to be able to extrapolate data and to be able to compare with the data they already had. The decision to move to a circuit where they have no references is a difficult decision. We are trying, let's see what we have achieved", he underlined .
Portimão is in the race with the Spanish circuits of Jerez de la Frontera and Barcelona, and with the French circuit of Paul Ricard.
The MotoGP world championship may continue in the Algarve until 2027.
Although in 2020 the last round of the World Cup will take place on the Algarve circuit, whose schedule was revised due to the pandemic of covid-19, Paulo Pinheiro reveals that there is a three-year contract signed with two more options, to come into force from 2022.
"That's what is signed. All DORNA contracts [empresa promotora do campeonato] are for three years plus two ", he revealed.
However, the date remains to be defined.
"Calendars are very volatile things and with a number of factors that have to be analyzed. Preferably, we always want to race in September, October or November. I love being the last race of the championship, obviously. Being in March. , April or May is also a good date ", he explained.
For Paulo Pinheiro "it does not make sense" to carry out the race "after Jerez (at the beginning of May) because the public is almost the same".
"If there is an alternation with Jerez, then that date in May already makes sense. If there is no such alternation, we have to move away from Jerez and go to the end of the year. September, October, November will always be a more plausible date. If is the last race of the year, for us it makes sense ", he stressed.
The continuity of Formula 1 will be more difficult to guarantee.
"Right now, very honestly, we don't even think about it, it doesn't make sense. Our focus is to do the best we can. If everything goes well, we are in a privileged position to be a good candidate for 2021 because nobody knows, honestly, what it will be" the future, said Paulo Pinheiro.
The AIA administrator understands that "it will be in the middle ground, that is, it will not be equal to 2020, but it will also not be a normal year".
"There is a significant window of opportunity for us to have both races and now we have to do a good job," he said.
The Superbike Championship has a contract until 2022 and the objective "is to renew".
This year the AIA will host the Formula World Championship (25 October) and the MotoGP World Championship (22 November).