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F1 confirm Turkish GP return as replacement for axed Canadian race

F1 confirm Turkish GP return as replacement for axed Canadian race

F1 News

F1 confirm Turkish GP return as replacement for axed Canadian race

F1 confirm Turkish GP return as replacement for axed Canadian race

The Turkish Grand Prix is to return to this season's F1 calendar after the Canadian race was officially axed due to Covid-19 concerns.

The June 11-13 event has had to be cancelled for 'public health reasons' by Montreal health officials, even though it is understood their Quebec counterparts were willing to allow the race to go ahead behind closed doors.

However, alongside the announcement revealing the 2021 cancellation came news of a two-year contract extension for the Canadian Grand Prix with the event's future now secure on the calendar through to 2031.

After a report by national broadcaster Radio-Canada a fortnight ago declared the race off, F1 insisted it was still in discussions in the hope of finding a way forward.

The major hurdle for F1 that could not be overcome, however, was the fact there is currently a two-week quarantine period in place for all arrivals in Canada.

Despite F1's offer of running a strict bubble policy, as it managed successfully with last season's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the concerns remained too high for Montreal health officials given the previous weekend in June the sport is in Azerbaijan.

It means Turkey will now take up the vacant slot, which logistically serves F1 well given the proximity of the two nations, with Istanbul less than a three-hour flight away from Baku.

The Istanbul Park circuit made a welcome return to the calendar last season after a nine-year absence and delivered arguably the most thrilling grand prix of the 17-race calendar.

A newly laid track combined with rain made for a captivating spectacle, won by Lewis Hamilton who also claimed his seventh F1 title.

“While it is disappointing we cannot be in Canada this season we are excited to confirm that Turkey will host a Grand Prix in 2021 after an amazing race last season," said F1 president and CEO Stefano Domenicali.

"I know all our fans are excited by the dramatic start to the season and Turkey is a great circuit that delivers great battles on the track.

“I want to thank the promoter and authorities in Canada for all of their efforts in recent weeks but the travel situation made our plans impossible.

"I equally want to thank the promoter and authorities in Turkey for their ongoing willingness to host a Formula 1 race that shows the huge interest in our sport and the hope from many locations to have a Grand Prix.

"We have had very good conversations will all the other promoters since the start of the year and continue to work closely with them during this period.”

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