F1 shut down talk fourth American GP have ‘signed contract’ to race at £3.2bn stadium | F1 | Sport

F1 have shut down talk that they have signed a contract to race in Chicago for the 2026 season and beyond, in what would have guaranteed that there will be four Grands Prix in the United States on the calendar.

According to a Fastest Pitstop report, the contract to bring F1 to the streets of Chicago had been signed with a spot on the 2026 calendar set aside for the new event.

The report states that the event would happen around a new £3.2billion ($4bn) stadium that is set to be constructed in the city. The Chicago Grand Prix will was suggested to be a night race, taking place in the week before the Canadian Grand Prix.

However, F1 has rejected any suggestion that a deal has been signed. There will only be three US races on the schedule, in Texas, Miami and Las Vegas.

The debate surrounding F1’s continued expansion into the US continues to rage on. There was plenty of opposition when Las Vegas was announced as a third American race, and that opposition will be amplified off the back of this reveal.

While the growing F1 intrigue from the world’s most fanatical motorsport nation has been welcomed, Liberty Media’s pursuit of more American races has been a controversial decision.

However, some key figures in the paddock are keen to see even more trips to the United States on the calendar. Former Racing Point and Alpine team principal Otmar Szafnauer is one of those.

« We have three now and it’s amazing what Netflix and the fact we have three races, as a combination, has done for the sport in America, » he explained earlier this year. « What we have to do is keep those fans interested – they’re there. Last year in Canada, the NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell came and talked to all the team principals.

« He said the NFL was at a crossroads of getting a bigger fanbase and he said, ‘The thing you’ve got to do now is capitalise on the fact that people are aware of your sport – make sure you keep them and grow it’. And he’s right.

« To me, the big question is how do you keep them? Maybe, a fourth race in America. I’ve always said, make it a destination race. I think Miami is, I think Vegas is, Austin – I loved the city, but make it a destination race. In Abu Dhabi, they think that way too. »

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