Formula 1 2019 season set to finish in December with Germany included

Lewis Hamilton crosses the line to win the 2018 German Grand Prix
Lewis Hamilton won the German Grand Prix in July but the race did not take place in 2015 and 2017

The 2019 Formula 1 season is set to finish in December, while the German Grand Prix has been included on the draft calendar released by the FIA.

It was also announced that a new contract has been signed for the Japanese Grand Prix to continue at Suzuka until 2021.

The record-equalling 21-race calendar has the same order as 2018, with the first race in Australia on 17 March.

Abu Dhabi will close the season with the race taking place on 1 December.

There have only been three later finishes to a season since the Formula 1 World Championship began in 1950 - 1959, 1962 and 1963.

The calendar will be submitted for approval during the FIA World Motor Sport Council meeting on 12 October.

The German Grand Prix has been held in alternate years recently and there had been doubts about its future with organisers wanting to reduce their race fee.

It will follow the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, which is scheduled for 14 July.

Eleven of the 21 races are in Europe, five in Asia, four in the Americas and one in Australia.

The 1,000th grand prix since F1's inception will take place in China on 14 April, the third race of the season.

Sean Bratches, managing director of F1 commercial operations, said: "The renewal of the Japanese Grand Prix and the confirmation of the German Grand Prix are both examples of our direction to place fans at the heart of Formula 1, a vision shared with all our promoters."

2019 F1 draft calendar

17 March, Australia

31 March, Bahrain

14 April, China

28 April, Azerbaijan

12 May, Spain

26 May, Monaco

9 June, Canada

23 June, France

30 June, Austria

14 July, Great Britain

28 July, Germany

4 August, Hungary

1 September, Belgium

8 September, Italy

22 September, Singapore

29 September, Russia

13 October, Japan

27 October, Mexico

3 November, USA

17 November, Brazil

1 December, Abu Dhabi

Japanese Grand Prix
Suzuka has been home to the Japanese Grand Prix since 1987, apart from 2007 and 2008 when it was held at Fuji

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