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F1 Season To Start July 5

The Formula One (F1) season is set to commence with the Austrian Grand Prix on July 5 after the F1 received approval from the Austrian government to stage the event.

Austrian health minister, Rudolf Anschober, said the Red Bull Ring in Austria would host back-to-back races behind closed doors on consecutive weekends.

“The two Formula One races on July 5 and 12 at Spielberg will be staged without spectators,” Anschober said.

“The organiser has presented a plan for implementation that is based on the special requirements of Formula One and the necessary protective measures against the spread of the Coronavirus.

“In addition to strict hygiene measures, the plan also provides for regular tests and health checks for the teams and all other employees, as well as a specific medical plan,” he said.

F1 managing director, Ross Brawn, said there are still lots of challenges before the event can take place.

“One of the logistical challenges is getting everyone tested and cleared to enter the paddock and enter the racing environment,” Brawn said.

“And I think once we do that, it’s very attractive to keep everyone in that environment, within that kind of biosphere that we want to create for another race.

“It’s also pretty challenging to find the right sort of races early on where we can control the environment well enough.

“Austria fits that bill very well.

“It’s got a local airport right next to the circuit, where people can charter planes into.

“It’s not too close to a metropolis, it has a great infrastructure around it.

“There will be no motorhomes, but there will be full catering facility laid on that the circuit has.

“We can basically contain everyone within that environment.

“Therefore once we’re there, it’s appealing to have another race the following week,” he said.

Due to COVID-19, F1 has been forced to either cancel or postpone 10 of its scheduled races for the season, but F1 boss, Chase Carey, remains confident that a 15-18 race season is still possible.