Wurz: Austria to thrill on F1 return

Wurz: Austria to thrill on F1 return

Formula 1

Wurz: Austria to thrill on F1 return


Alex Wurz believes the Austrian Grand Prix will produce one of the most spectacular races of the Formula 1 season when the Spielberg track rejoins the calendar in 2014.

The now Red Bull-owned venue announced earlier this week that it had gained a slot on next year’s F1 schedule, ending a 10-year absence.

Wurz, the last Austrian to take a podium finish in F1, said that while Spielberg might not be as great a challenge as its Osterreichring predecessor, it ought to be an excellent venue for wheel-to-wheel racing.

“There’s always a debate about whether or not this track is super-sexy or not,” said Wurz. “However, for the racing itself, even in the years where overtaking was almost impossible, every year this was the racetrack with the highest amount of overtaking and for that reason it was a cool race for spectators and drivers.”

Red Bull chief Dietrich Mateschitz has revealed that he will cover the event’s promoters fee himself, while acknowledging that current limits on spectator numbers will have to be renegotiated for the grand prix. Wurz agreed that there would still be bureaucratic issues.

“There were always discussions on this grand prix track from it being the old Osterreichring about issues with farmers and land surrounding [the track] and what they are allowed to do,” he said.

“There have been limitations on what [the race organizers] are allowed to do, there have been restrictions on the numbers of days and spectator numbers — there are still some bureaucratic hurdles to catch us.

“I hope there will be no problem with that, but there could be some fights behind the scenes, which I guess is normal to an extent. The main thing is that the Austrian Grand Prix coming back is very important for Austrian motorsport and 99 percent of the people in the paddock like to come to Austria.”