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Formula 1 dealing with "an absolute nightmare" over new calendar

Formula 1 dealing with "an absolute nightmare" over new calendar

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Formula 1 dealing with "an absolute nightmare" over new calendar

Formula 1 dealing with "an absolute nightmare" over new calendar

Formula 1 is facing "an absolute nightmare" in its attempt to put together a new calendar, according to Dutch Grand Prix sporting director Jan Lammers.

F1's return to Zandvoort was due to take place this weekend, but the race is one of seven that has so far been postponed, with a further three cancelled in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

F1 CEO Chase Carey has stated that a finalised calendar will be published as soon as possible, with the hope the season can start in Austria in early July, followed by further races across Europe before moving on to Eurasia, Asia, the Americas, and concluding in the Gulf with Bahrain and Abu Dhabi in December.

Formula 1 CEO Chase Carey: 'We are targeting season start in Austria in July'Read more

Whether the Dutch GP will be part of the European leg is still under discussion according to Lammers as a race without fans will have to be paid for by Liberty Media.

With large public gatherings in the Netherlands and Belgium cancelled until September 1, placing the Belgian GP in question, Lammers told GPFans: "It's quite a challenging puzzle because whatever grands prix they do without the public they will have to cover the costs for that - maybe not Austria, although I don't know for sure.

"That is quite a tall order I would imagine, so I'm sure that it's a challenge for them, not only from an agenda point of view, but particularly also from a budget point of view

"So lots of things are being discussed, and like Zandvoort, I'm sure they've also spoken to Spa, about what is feasible.

"Every track has its own price because the production of a grand prix, even without the public, has a different price tag, be it Hungary, Holland or England.'

There is a possibility of Zandvoort holding a race with fans in early September should lockdown measures be eased, but a hesitant Lammers added: "Once we have a clear request from Formula One, then we can start thinking about a clear answer that might or might not lead to a clear agreement to run the grand prix.

"At this moment, it's common sense which is ultimately the deciding factor, as to how we come to terms with each other.

"We can romanticise about September, but the problem for us is if we say it might be the beginning of September that might lead to questions and assumptions."

Lammers can respect the difficulties being faced by Carey and the FIA as to where and when to hold races, and whether they can be staged with fans or be behind closed doors.

"For Formula 1, it's like a puzzle where they get halfway through and the picture changes and they have to restart again," said Lammers.

"It's an absolute nightmare for them to put that new calendar together."

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