Formula One Season Could be Delayed

Formula One Season Could be Delayed
Formula One Season Could be Delayed

There are already signs that the start of the 2021 Formula One season could be delayed.

It is due to begin on March 21st with the traditional curtain-raiser, the Australian Grand Prix at Albert Park in Melbourne. However, race officials have now admitted for the first time that the timing pf that race is now in doubt, and it may have to be staged later in the year.

If that is the case, then the season may start instead in Bahrain a week later.

The reason for the potential delay remains the prevailing Covid-19 restrictions imposed on international arrivals in Australia. At the moment, anybody arriving in the country from abroad is required to quarantine for 14 days before they are allowed to travel around and associate with others.

That is incompatible with the nature of Formula One, which involves the ten teams and all the assorted personnel moving around the world from race to race.

The sport dealt with the challenges this poses in 2020 by erecting a bio-secure bubble with detailed rules in which around 1,200 people moved between the various races, with regular testing for all. However, this is not consistent with the Australian government rules, and they are not minded to make an exception for Formula One.

A similar problem arose with the Australian Open tennis championship, the first Grand Slam of the Year, which has been delayed three weeks, in order to allow all participants from overseas to complete their mandatory quarantine period.

Last year, the 2020 Australian Grand Prix was called-off hours before the first practice session was due to start, after a member of the McLaren team tested positive for coronavirus.

In the end, the hole of the first part of the season was lost, and the action did not finally get underway until early July in Austria.

In the end, almost a full calendar of races was completed, but they were centred on Europe, with three Grand Prix at the end hosted in the Middle east.

All indications at this stage is the organisers of the Australian Grand prix are talking about a postponement not another cancellation.

Suneer chowdhary
Sports Pundit staff writer @suneerchowdhary
ICC-accredited cricket journalist, covers Team India through their cricketing journey around the world

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