The FIM MotoGP World Championship will arrive in Bulgaria as of 2012, following a preliminary agreement reached between the Bulgarian Motorcycle Federation and Dorna Sports, the commercial rights holder for MotoGP. The new five year deal, which will take MotoGP to Bulgaria from 2012 to 2016, marks another step into Eastern Europe for MotoGP, and who recently signed a similar deal for a Hungarian GP.
Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta commented, “This is the first step in bringing MotoGP to Bulgaria, which is an exciting project for us. The Bulgarian government demonstrated great interest in bringing a Grand Prix here and it will be an important development for us, having never staged a race here before. We are highly confident in Bulgaria’s ability to host and organise Grands Prix efficiently and safely.”
The meeting in Sofia also saw the announcement that Bulgarian free-to-air national broadcasters BNT will have exclusive live television rights to the FIM MotoGP World Championship from 2009, which will see all MotoGP races broadcast live in Bulgaria.
Rumors also persist of further expansion even further east. Both Bernie Ecclestone, boss of Formula 1, and Carmelo Ezpeleta have expressed their enthusiasm for a race to be held in Russia. Up until the onset of the global financial crisis, that looked very possible. But with the collapse of oil and gas prices, Russia has seen its income slashed, and at the moment, staving off internal unrest is higher up the local agenda than hosting prestigious racing series.