Russian politics crashes Kyalami F1 dream

By Dylan Bettencourt
Sports Editor

Efforts to revive the South African Grand Prix at Kyalami have been abandoned due to the country’s relationship with Russia.

South Africa, which hasn’t hosted a race since 1993, faced hurdles over financial details in the initial talks between F1 and promoter Warren Scheckter. 

A new promoter, 777, led by Adam Brown, showed interest in bringing F1 to South Africa, gaining support from seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton. 

However, it is understood that the political alignment between South Africa and Russia has led to the decision to abandon plans for a South African Grand Prix in the near future, Racing365 reported.

Following the fallout from the Russian invasion of Ukraine, F1 had to swiftly cancel the Russian Grand Prix last year, and F1 governing body the FIA imposed a ban on Russian and Belarussian participation if they didn’t sign a neutrality agreement. 

South Africa’s alignment with President Vladimir Putin’s regime has presented an unexpected obstacle for F1 as the country has not denounced Russia or the ongoing war. 


Despite close-to-finalised terms between 777 and F1, South Africa’s political stance and its association with Russia, Brazil, China, and India through BRICS have made a South African event unviable for the time being.

The decision to abandon the South African GP plans is expected to benefit Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium, as it will likely see the Belgian Grand Prix remain on the calendar for at least another year. 

The Kyalami race circuit had reportedly agreed to rent out its facilities to 777, pending a formal signature, but that did not materialise. 

With tensions rising due to allegations of South Africa supplying arms to Russia, the prospects of a South African GP in the near future have diminished. 

Both Formula 1 and the Kyalami Circuit have yet to comment on the matter. 

Pictured above: Kyalami Circuit

Image source: Twitter

Weather Banner
Previous articleMeet Kalk Bay’s beloved buskers
Next articleFormer Banyana star’s sister attacked with petrol