Formula One sets ‘target’ date for start of season
Formula One chief Chase Carey is "now increasingly confident," racing can begin with the Austrian Grand Prix on July 5 as the sport looks to resume after the coronavirus outbreak.
"We're targeting a start to racing in Europe through July, August and beginning of September, with the first race taking place in Austria on 3-5 July weekend," he said in a statement released just after the French Grand Prix, scheduled for June 27, said it would not run in 2020.
"September, October and November, would see us race in Eurasia, Asia and the Americas, finishing the season in the Gulf in December with Bahrain before the traditional finale in Abu Dhabi, having completed between 15-18 races."
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Carey said the calendar had yet to be finalised and it was expected initial races would take place behind closed doors.
But with income slashed and the smaller teams desperate for revenue, that is considered a necessary step to ensure survival.
All 10 teams flew to Melbourne for the season-opening Australian Grand Prix on March 15 but that was postponed at short-notice and racing has not yet been able to resume.
Carey did not provide details to the provisional new calendar such as whether double races, mooted in Austria and Britain, would be considered. However, a delay to the current season end - currently November 29 in Abu Dhabi - was essentially confirmed.
Meanwhile, MotoGP chief Carmelo Ezpeleta is hopeful the season would start in July after having to cancel or postpone the opening eight races.
"Right now we are optimistic to make a season between July and November," Ezpeleta said.
"If it's possible then we will be able to but it depends on the situation because we need to take care about different things."
Ezpeleta said the two other options being considered are commencing in September as well as starting later in the year.
Originally published as Formula One sets 'target' date for start of season