Formula 1 has announced that it will be moving forward its summer break to March April. The announcement comes as a response to the coronavirus outbreak. The summer break is traditionally held for two weeks around July-August. Following the cancellation of the initial grand prix races like Australia, Bahrain, China and Vietnam and F1 expected to resume by end of May, This would ideally mean that F1 may resume with the Azerbaijan Grand Prix being the first race of the 2020 season. While the Chinese GP is not expected to return to the calendar this year, F1 is trying to accommodate the cancelled/postponed races during the time the summer break was scheduled to take place.
While F1 practices a two-week summer break, this year it will hold an elongated 21-day break in March-April instead. During the break, all 10 teams must cease all race and car-related activity for the full duration of the break.
The FIA released a statement saying “In light of the global impact of the COVID-19 coronavirus currently affecting the organisation of FIA Formula One World Championship events, the World Motor Sport Council has approved a change to the 2020 FIA Formula 1 Sporting Regulations, moving the summer shutdown period from July and August to March and April and extending it from 14 to 21 days. All competitors must, therefore, observe a shutdown period of 21 consecutive days during the months of March and/or April.
The FIA confirmed that the decision was taken unanimously by both the F1 Strategy Group and F1 Commission.
F1 is said to return by end of May 2020. This would mean that further the Spanish, Dutch and the historic Monaco Grand Prix may be cancelled or rescheduled. However, with the ever-changing circumstances of the coronavirus pandemic, nothing is set in stone at the moment.
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