F1 confirms first eight races of 2020
July kick-off in Austria for F1, with Silverstone double-header lined up for August.
Like any international sport, restarting the Formula 1 calendar was always going to be a logistical nightmare for the authorities; bringing so many different people to so many different places, with such a jam-packed schedule, was difficult at the best of times. Leave alone during a global coronavirus pandemic. However, with progress being made behind the scenes, the first eight races of this year’s championship have now been announced.
All set to be closed events, the 2020 Formula 1 calendar will start on the weekend of 3rd-5th July at the Red Bull Ring in Austria; that will be followed up the next weekend by a rerun of the same race. Following a Hungarian GP on July 19th, there will be another double-header at Silverstone: both the weekend of July 31st-August 2nd and August 7th-9th will host F1 races. Events at Barcelona, Spa and Monza during August and the first weekend of September will see us through the first eight rounds.
Beyond that is not clear yet, given the ever-changing nature of the situation, but F1 says that the details of a wider calendar are being finalised – expect that to be published in the coming weeks. It’s hoped that between 15 and 18 races will take place in a truncated 2020 F1 championship, with the season extended into December. Spectators will be permitted back “when it is safe to do so.”
With 2020 marking seven decades of Grand Prix racing – the second Silverstone round is officially the 70th anniversary GP – this year was meant to be a momentous one for the sport with 22 races (and 22 countries) lined up. Now it looks like little more half those countries will host F1 races, which is such a shame given the milestone. Still, limited racing is better than none at all – and that first Austria round is now little more than a month away.