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Work begins on upgrading Spa-Francorchamps, could it host MotoGP?

Work begins to upgrade the iconic Spa-Francorchamps so as to allow international motorcyle racing to visit for the first time in two decades

A huge €80 million renovation project has begun at the iconic Spa-Francorchamps circuit to bring it up to the standard that would allow international motorcycle racing to return to the venue for the first time in almost two decades.

The venue is considered one of the finest in motorsport and is lauded for its high-speed, sweeping layout, while bends like Blanchimont and especially the notorious Eau Rouge uphill left-right-left bend have earned their place in infamy.

However, while it has been used on the GP schedule in the past, it has largely fallen out of favour in recent years as motorcycles became quicker to render it unsafe in a modern era.

This will potentially change though as work starts on bringing the circuit up to date, spurred on by its inclusion on the Endurance World Championship calendar in 2022 for a 24-hour event. It will be the first time international motorcycle racing has visited Spa since EWC last competed in 2003.

By bringing it up to a standard that will allow EWC to visit it will gain a ‘B licence’ which means a series like the WorldSBK Championship will also be cleared to race there. Spa was a fixture on the WorldSBK calendar from 1986 to 1992.

As for MotoGP, it would require the circuit to hold a A licence, though it’s unclear whether the works will extend that far. However, upgrading from B to A won’t necessarily be out of the question if it is already going to such a significant effort here.

The vast €80 million investment will be completed over a ten-year period with five bends - La Source, Radillpn, Blanchimont, Les Combes and Stavelot - all have their run-off areas extended as a starter.

In addition, the grandstands will be refurbished and covered to allow 4,600 seats to face Radillon and offer views as far as La Source.

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