The French Grand Prix organisers have decided to call off the Formula One race this season due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis. The French GP is the 10th F1 race to be called off due to the novel Covid-19 pandemic which has brought the whole world to a standstill.
The French Formula One Grand Prix was scheduled to take place between June 26-28 at the Paul Ricard circuit in the south of France. French GP managing director Eric Boullier said in a statement that eyes “were turning 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.
“The eyes of the GIP Grand Prix de France – Le Castellet are already turning towards the summer of 2021 in order to offer our spectators an even more unprecedented event at the heart of the Région Sud,” Eric Boullier, Managing Director of the GIP Grand Prix de France – Le Castellet said.
Chase Carey, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Formula 1 added: ” We have been in close contact with the French promoter during this evolving situation and while it is disappointing for our fans and the F1 community that the French Grand Prix will not take place we fully support the decision taken by the French authorities in France and look forward to being back at Paul Ricard soon.”
Chase Carey also said that F1 is targeting to start the 2020 season sometime in July.
“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.
“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 said.
NO FANS FOR BRITISH Grand Prix
Meanwhile, British Grand Prix organisers say they are talking to the government about the viability of holding the Formula One race on July 19 with no fans amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The season was due to begin in March but no races have been possible so far.
Silverstone circuit managing director Stuart Pringle wrote an email to ticket buyers saying he is “extremely disappointed to tell you that we are unable to stage this year’s British Grand Prix in front of the fans.”
Pringle says organizers left the decision for as long as possible “but it is abundantly clear given the current conditions … that a Grand Prix under normal conditions is just not going to be possible.”