With COVID-19 hitting China hard, it was inevitable that the Grand Prix of China would be impacted. Even before I posted the 2020 Calendar the FIA announced this race was postponed; a new date has not yet been announced.
Unfortunately the organisers left it to the very last minute before announcing the Grand Prix of Australia was cancelled. I wonder if the race would have gone ahead if McLaren hadn’t withdrawn after some of their team tested positive for the coronavirus.
A day later the Grands Prix of Bahrain and Vietnam were postponed, so that’s the first four race weekends called off and the next two (Netherlands and Spain) “have announced they are in consultation with F1 and the FIA about what the situation means for their events”.
So, for now, it looks like the 2020 season might start on May 1st with the Dutch GP but there may yet be more updates to come. I’ll update this post and the 2020 Calendar as more information becomes available.
Update, Mar19: “Dutch, Spanish and Monaco Grands Prix postponed” [FIA]
That puts Azerbaijan (Jun07) at the top of the calendar now.
Apr27: “French Grand Prix organisers said on Monday the race at Paul Ricard on 28 June was off because of the country’s ban on major events until mid-July.” [BBC] [FIA]
Statement from F1 CEO Chase Carey: Target is to begin season in Austria on July 5 “We expect the early races to be without fans but hope fans will be part of our events as we move further into the schedule.”
Jun02: FIA announce a new 8-race calendar – see https://henman.ca/2020/06/04/new-f1-calendar-for-2020/
Jun12: “The Japanese, Singapore and Azerbaijan Grands Prix have been cancelled” [BBC]
Azerbaijan had previously (Mar23) been postponed but now it’s cancelled.
This leaves Russia, USA, Mexico, Brazil and Abu Dhabi without any clear updates – they’ve not been cancelled but they’re not on the new calendar. However, the new calendar only has races scheduled from July to September, so maybe these 5 races will keep their original dates?