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French GP - 'Today our responsibility is to go ahead'

French GP - 'Today our responsibility is to go ahead'

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French GP - 'Today our responsibility is to go ahead'

French GP - 'Today our responsibility is to go ahead'

French Grand Prix managing director Eric Boullier is currently "looking at all scenarios" in a bid to keep the race on the Formula 1 calendar.

With the opening eight grands prix of the season either postponed or cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, the earliest the season can now start is in Canada on June 14.

That race is also expected to be axed, leaving the French GP at the Circuit Paul Ricard on June 28 as the next in line.

Boullier concedes no decision has yet been taken. Speaking to GPFans, he said: "For us, we are still three months away, so it's too far ahead to consider anything.

"We are looking at all scenarios, but today, our responsibility is to go ahead."

While Motorsport UK has suspended the issue of all organising permits until the end of June, its counterpart, the French Motorsport Federation (FFSA), has yet to make such a directive.

Boullier is currently in regular contact with FFSA president Nicholas Deschaux and F1 Group CEO Chase Carey, and at present, he insists there is no deadline being applied.

"I speak to the president (Deschaux) nearly every week," said Boullier. "In France, they organise a thousand races per year, with Formula One just one of them. There are a lot of headaches concerning all the other events.

"At the moment, I don't want to run to deadlines because that would bring unnecessary pressure.

"The only deadlines we have are internal, within our organisation, on whether we make a decision to build certain grandstands or hospitality. Even if we decide not to build to full capacity, we can wait longer, and that's why there is no deadline."

Remarkably, fans are still purchasing tickets for the event, albeit safe in the knowledge they will be refunded if it does not go ahead.

"We are lucky enough to be insured, so even a late cancellation means everybody will be refunded," said Boullier.

"Ticket sales this year were doing okay, and then we have this terrible situation, but there are still some sales, a few hundred every week, which is very strange.

"For some people, the event is still three months' away, a long time ahead."

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