Hockenheim is confident that it will not take a loss on this year's German Grand Prix thanks to a revised deal with Bernie Ecclestone and a boost in spectator numbers.
The venue said it lost more than five million Euros ($6.1m) when it last hosted the race in 2008, but since then it has restructured its deal with Formula One Management, with the two parties agreeing to share liabilities. Hockenheim's CEO Karl-Josef Schmidt told AUTOSPORT that he was now optimistic about the track's financial situation.
"We have the new agreement with Bernie Ecclestone, which relieves us of the burden we had before – where we made 5.3 million Euros loss from F1 in 2008," he explained. "Now, envisaging we will have the same number of spectators as 2008 – about 62,000 – we will break even. That is the number we are expecting as a minimum, but the pre-sale is running well and we are confident we will have more than that."
Schmidt said that although German interest in the sport was high this year – thanks to the return of Michael Schumacher and the success of Sebastian Vettel – he was not expecting a return to the glory days of sellout 100,000-strong crowds.
"Times have changed," he said. "We would be satisfied if we would have 70-75,000 spectators, and there is no reason we will get back to those numbers of 2000-2002."
Hockenheim has agreed a race-share deal with the Nurburgring, where the two tracks host the German Grand Prix on alternate years.