Until the 2032 season, the Hungaroring will remain one of the venues on the Formula 1 race calendar, it was announced after the signing of a five-year contract extension during the 38th Hungarian Grand Prix on Saturday in Mogyoród.
The extension of the original agreement, which was valid until 2027, was announced by State Secretary responsible for sports Ádám Schmidt, along with Stefano Domenicali, the President and CEO of F1, and President and CEO of Hungaroring Sport Zrt. Zsolt Gyulay, at a press conference on 22 July. Schmidt mentioned during the announcement that the owner of the racing series set a condition for the extension: a commitment to completely renovate the Hungaroring track by the 2026 event.
‘Our plans indicate that the procurement process for the works will be concluded by the end of the year, and once the government support is approved, the contract will take effect in early 2024, allowing the preparatory work to begin,’ said the state secretary, adding that the contract extension was signed on behalf of the Ministry of Defence by Minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky.
Ádám Schmidt emphasised that the Hungarian Grand Prix has been held annually without interruption since 1986,
making it the second-longest-standing race on the calendar after Monza.
‘This race has long exceeded being a simple sporting event: it is one of Hungary’s most important international events, attracting tens of thousands of foreign fans to our country every year, and its broadcast is seen all around the world,’ he added.
Stefano Domenicali expressed his desire to witness the determination and effort put into the developments and improvements for the fans at each venue and event, particularly in Hungary. ‘This is a special track, made even more special by the proximity of the beautiful Hungarian capital, Budapest. Our drivers and fans are always looking forward to this race,’ added the President and CEO.
Zsolt Gyulay stated that the plans include a complete renovation of the track, including the main building, main grandstand, and fan zones, to create a world-class environment to welcome teams and fans during the new contractual period. ‘We are immensely proud and deeply honoured by the contract extension, which shows that we have achieved success in this fierce competition for hosting an F1 grand prix,’ said the President and CEO. He highlighted that his team began working on the ambitious development eight years ago with his colleagues and now feels ‘infinitely happy’ that their efforts have borne fruit.
More than 100,000 spectators witnessed the the 70-lap race of the 38th Hungarian Grand Prix at the Hungaroring. This marks a revenue record for the facility in its new era, Hungaroring CEO Zsolt Gyulay stated, adding that during the four-day race weekend, including the Thursday fan walk with the participation of 5,000 spectators, a total of 303,000 people visited the racetrack in Mogyoród, making it a record-breaking event in every aspect.
On Sunday’s 38th Hungarian Grand Prix, the winner Max Verstappen stated that he and his team had a perfect day at the Hungaroring. The reigning two-time world champion from the Netherlands mentioned in the post-race press conference that the team managed to solve the issues it experienced during Saturday’s qualifying session. His car’s balance was excellent, and he handled the tires well, which made driving the Red Bull enjoyable, resulting in a ‘perfect day’ for them. ‘People easily forget how difficult it is to win 12 races in a row, even with the fastest car, because mistakes can happen anytime. It’s fantastic to work together with every member of the team, and race after race, we strive to build on the positive things,’ Verstappen referred to the series of record-setting successes for Red Bull.
The other Red Bull driver, Sergio Pérez was delighted that he could move up from ninth place to the podium on a track where overtaking is challenging. ‘I haven’t managed to finish in the top three here before. I tried to drive aggressively, which was difficult at the beginning on the hard compound tires as we lacked grip. I think we maximised the potential of this weekend, and I’m glad I collected many points,’ said Pérez.
Lando Norris, who finished in second place,
accidentally broke Verstappen’s unique trophy,
manufactured by the Herend Porcelain Manufactory, worth approximately 15 million Hungarian forints and created by around thirty artisans over six months.
‘To be honest, I don’t know what happened with the trophy during the podium ceremony. Max must have placed it too close to the edge, and it fell,’ said the McLaren driver with a big smile, who previously apologised to the winner for his action.
However, the Herend Porcelain Manufactory Zrt. will recreate the trophy that was broken. Attila Simon, the CEO of the company said that the company regretfully acknowledged the fate of the cup, but since Herend plays an important role in Hungary’s country image building, the company will replace the trophy. ‘The teams will determine who was at fault, but we are taking on the joyful and challenging task and will recreate it,’ stated the CEO about the trophy, which features a 19th-century oriental pattern. Simon emphasised that Herend provides a lifetime replacement guarantee for all their creations, which is why a duplicate of the Hungarian Grand Prix trophy is available in their pattern collection. The manufacturing of the body of the trophy has already begun, so the originally six-month production process will now be shorter, and the Red Bull’s two-time world champion can receive the cup in a few weeks.