American races a stumbling block as F1 delays calendar release
Formula 1 will not be releasing a full calendar ahead of the season-opening Austrian Grand Prix as planned, with CEO Chase Carey waiting to see if an American leg will be possible.
F1 managing director of motorsports Ross Brawn had previously stated a full calendar would be released ahead of this Sunday's race in Austria, only for Carey to declare on Thursday [July 2] this was now not possible.
“I think in the next few weeks we will look to land, certainly at least another chunk of the calendar, ideally we’d like to land the whole second half of the calendar," Carey told the official F1 website.
"There are a number of races we already know will be on the calendar. I don’t want to get into piecemeal addressing it, I’d like to address it holistically. But to lock the dates in we really need to figure out what other races will be on it.
“We’ve said 15-18 races and we still feel comfortable with that as a target. Right now we have a number of races we have essentially agreed with, we just haven’t firmed the date up.
"And a number of places we are moving forward with, trying to firm a date up. We have a few that are much more up in the air based on circumstances in that country.”
Keen for F1 to retain its global status as much as possible in such unusual circumstances, Carey is loathe to right off events in the United States, Mexico and Brazil, pointing out the world is only four months into the Covid-19 pandemic, and the picture will likely have changed considerably in another four months.
Carey is also aware, though, he cannot afford to wait too long before plans are finalised.
“Really we need to know, can we race in a location?" added Carey. "Will there be restrictions on our ability to get in and out a location in a functioning way?
"And to some degree we’re trying to address the fan question. We’d like to have fans at our races. It’s a possibility.
"But ultimately we need to plan ahead, So there’s a point in time when we have to just put a stake in the ground and make decisions on what we know. I think that’s soon.”
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