Thailand is set to get a place on the MotoGP calendar in 2018 with the Buriram circuit joining an extended round of 19.
The Hermann Tilke-designed facility has agreed a two-year deal with championship promoter Dorna Sports, with an option to extend it to a third.
It was originally meant to hold its first MotoGP event this year, but complications involving the track’s title sponsor Chang beer and Dorna’s deal with Singha caused a delay.
The circuit opened in late 2014, and has hosted the World Superbike Championship since ’15.
Buriram will slot in towards the end of the calendar, creating two blocks of two flyaway rounds along with Motegi, Phillip Island and Sepang, which last year were held on three successive weekends.
Thailand’s inclusion of the 2018 schedule would likely mean that the Finnish KymiRing circuit, which was set to host its first MotoGP race next year, gets pushed back one season.
A round in Kazakhstan at the Sokol circuit is also believed to be under consideration to join the calendar, in either 2018 or ’19.
Dorna boss Carmelo Ezpeleta has previously stated that MotoGP will “never” exceed 20 rounds per year, meaning that if Finland and Kazakhstan both get added to the schedule, one of the existing 18 races will have to make way.
The only events out of contract for 2018 are Jerez and the new-for-’16 Red Bull Ring race.