Azerbaijan Grand Prix promoter Arif Rahimov stated the nation's EURO 2020 hosting commitments mean it is not possible to switch dates with the Turkish race as Formula 1 continues to battle against strict travel restrictions.
Last week, the British government added Turkey to its 'red list' meaning travellers must quarantine in a hotel for 10 days after returning from the country.
This has provided F1 with a significant headache with the news coming just nine days after it was announced the Istanbul race would replace the Canadian Grand Prix.
Switching the order of the two races would have resulted in members of the F1 paddock spending long enough outside of Turkey not to be required to quarantine.
But with Baku hosting its first EURO 2020 fixture on June 12, the same day as qualifying is currently scheduled to take place in Turkey, the plan was a non-starter.
“There were talks, but in our case, our race weekend is really fixed,” said Rahimov.
“It was kind of squeezed in-between all the other events happening in the city because the football is still going ahead.
“The first game will be on June 12, which is on the Saturday following the race weekend. So there is not much that we can do in terms of we’re not very flexible this year.
“I guess if it was any other year where we’re the only major event on the calendar of Baku, then yeah, that could have been an option. But not this year.”
After last year's Azerbaijan Grand Prix was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, F1 has agreed a one-year contract extension that will see the race remain on the calendar until at least 2024.
Of the 2021 race, however, Rahimov confirmed there will be no spectators in attendance despite limited numbers attending last weekends Spanish Grand Prix and also the upcoming Monaco Grand Prix.
He added: “For the time being it’s confirmed that there will be absolutely no spectators.
“There will be people coming in to [do] the trophies and we have to kind of sit them somewhere appropriate, especially if it’s the president, but there will be no spectators whatsoever.”
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