French GP cancelled, British GP to be held without fans

0
73
LE CASTELLET, FRANCE - JUNE 23: Kevin Magnussen of Denmark driving the (20) Haas F1 Team VF-19 Ferrari leads Lance Stroll of Canada driving the (18) Racing Point RP19 Mercedes and Alexander Albon of Thailand driving the (23) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR14 Honda on track during the F1 Grand Prix of France at Circuit Paul Ricard on June 23, 2019 in Le Castellet, France. (Photo by Charles Coates/Getty Images)
Kevin Magnussen of Denmark driving the (20) Haas F1 Team VF-19 Ferrari leads Lance Stroll of Canada driving the (18) Racing Point RP19 Mercedes and Alexander Albon of Thailand driving the (23) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR14 Honda on track during the F1 Grand Prix of France at Circuit Paul Ricard on June 23, 2019 in Le Castellet, France. (Photo by Charles Coates/Getty Images)

The French Grand Prix was called off after organisers said they were unable to hold the event due to a ban on major events in France until the middle of July and coronavirus-related travel restrictions.

The Grand Prix, which is staged at the Paul Ricard Circuit at Le Castellet, Var, near Marseille, was scheduled to be held on June 28.

Eric Boullier, the Managing Director of the French GP, said that the event was already turning its focus towards the summer of 2021.

“Given the evolution of the situation linked to the spread of the COVID-19 virus, the French Grand Prix takes note of the decisions announced by the French State making it impossible to maintain our event.”

This is the 10th race to be affected by the coronavirus either through cancellation or postponement. The races in Australia and Monaco are the other ones to have been cancelled.

Formula One said that fans who had already purchased tickets for the race could seek further information on refunds from the organisers website.

Meanwhile, Silverstone Circuits Managing Director Stuart Pringle said the British Grand Prix, set for July 19, would take place behind closed doors.

“I am extremely disappointed to tell you that we are unable to stage this year’s British Grand Prix in front of the fans at Silverstone. We have left this difficult decision for as long as possible, but it is abundantly clear given the current conditions in the country and the government requirements in place now and for the foreseeable future, that a Grand Prix under normal conditions is just not going to be possible.

Formula One is considering holding two races back-to-back in Austria and Britain with the season kicking off in Austria on June 5.

Formula One CEO Chase Carey said that they expect the early races to be without fans but hoped fans will be part of the events as they move further into the schedule.

“We’re targeting a start to racing in Europe through July, August and beginning of September, with the first race taking place in Austria on 3-5 July weekend,” Carey said.

“September, October and November, would see us race in Eurasia, Asia and the Americas, finishing the season in the Gulf in December with Bahrain before the traditional finale in Abu Dhabi, having completed between 15-18 races.”

Carey added that they will publish their finalised calendar as soon as they possibly can.

Leave a Reply