The incredible rush for tickets for the return of Grand Prix racing to Portugal has seen Portimão’s Algarve International Autodrome predict it will end up with over 40,000 spectators for the race on October 25.
Initially, the autodrome was hoping for 10,000 more, but due to the constraints of the pandemic, the complex can only sell up to half capacity, which comes down to roughly 40,000.
Needless to say it will be a massive shot in the arm for the local economy. All told, forecasts are for a boost of around €30 million – and that’s just for the F1 weekend (starting on Friday October 23).
For the final MotoGP event of this year’s championships, Parkalgar – which runs the autodrome – is hopeful of another ‘sell out’, particularly in light of Portuguese racer Miguel Oliveira’s latest victory in Austria (click here).
But there’s a proviso, imposed again by the pandemic: if the epidemiological situation suddenly worsens, if autumn does produce the dreaded ‘second wave’, it could be that a live audience is deemed ‘impossible’. In such a context, Parkalgar’s CEO Paulo Pinheiro has told Lusa that everyone who has purchased tickets will have to be reimbursed. This is another reason why tickets purchased online are not actually being sent to customers before the end of September, he explained.
Tickets for the F1 event range in price with the most expensive reaching €650. So far, 31,000 have been sold with another 15,000 still available, said Paulo Pinheiro.