The Japanese GP will return to Suzuka in 2009, after Bernie Ecclestone gave the Honda-owned track a surprise reprieve.
The Japanese race has moved to Fuji Speedway this year, and Suzuka’s only hope appeared to be if Ecclestone awarded the country a second race, possibly under the Pacific GP name used at Aida in 1994-95.
However, he has persuaded Fuji owner Toyota to forego the original contract and accept a sharing arrangement “for the good of the sport”. Fuji will have the race for two years before alternating with Suzuka from 2009. A similar deal has been agreed between Hockenheim and the Nürburgring for the German event. Suzuka’s return is certain to be conditional on Honda making substantial upgrades to the venue.