May’s Dutch, Spanish And Monaco Grands Prix Postponed Due To Coronavirus
Zandvoort will no longer be a sea of orange clad Verstappen fans in early May
With the opening four races of this year’s Formula 1 season already postponed, it has now been announced as very much expected that May’s Dutch, Spanish and Monaco Grands Prix have also been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic and that the sport will only resume when it is safe to do so.
Barcelona will also not be holding a race in mid May
A statement issued by the sport’s governing body, the FIA, explained the latest postponements, saying “Due to the ongoing and fluid nature of the COVID-19 situation globally, the FIA, Formula 1 and the three promoters have taken these decisions in order to ensure the health and safety of the travelling staff, championship participants and fans, which remains our primary concern.”
The Monaco Grand Prix, the jewel in F1’s crown, has been postponed too
It added that careful consideration will be given to attempts to reschedule the postponed events when the current crisis improves and if suitable dates are available. Formula 1 had already decided to cancel the usual four week summer break in August in the hope that races may now be staged during this period if conditions permit.
The introduction of the new style of Formula 1 cars has also been postponed from next year to 2022
The postponement of the Dutch race at Zandvoort will come as a major disappointment to so many local fans who were set to cheer on their home hero Max Verstappen as F1 returns to the country for the first time since 1985. The Spanish race has always been a favourite with fans wanting to enjoy a usually sunny overseas Grand Prix without having to travel too far and of course Monaco, despite the limitations of its tight street circuit, is widely regarded as the jewel in Formula 1’s crown and is very popular with fans, sponsors and the drivers. Because of this prestige Monaco is the only race on the whole calendar where a hosting fee is not payable by the local organising body.
So, this means that the earliest the Formula 1 season will now begin is with the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in Baku on 7 June or Montreal’s Canadian event one week later.
A further significant development is that the FIA, Formula 1 and the teams have just agreed to postpone the introduction of 2021’s radical rule changes untIl a year later due to the uncertain times we all face.