London – The Formula 1 emergency season with 19 races still running could start in Europe – without spectators, if need be, and ideally in July. The top of the racing series strives for this scenario, according to Formula 1 sports director Ross Brawn.
However, the motorsport premier class should be back on the track by October at the latest, otherwise, the minimum number of eight races for a world championship ranking will no longer be achievable this year. However, Brawn is also considering a possible extension of the season into the coming year.
However, the wish for nine cancelled and postponed races due to the coronavirus pandemic is a beginning of the season in early July. And above all: continue driving afterwards. “It’s nothing if we have to start and then stop for a while,” Brawn told Sky Sports.
A start in Europe is most likely, ghost races are conceivable. A Grand Prix without a spectator is not great, “but it is better than not to drive at all”. For millions of fans, it is also variety and entertainment in these difficult times. Another solution to create as many races as possible: two on the same course.
The French Grand Prix on June 28th in Le Castellet has not yet been postponed or cancelled, a week later the Austrian Grand Prix in Spielberg is scheduled for July 5th. Brawn did not comment on the venues for the start of the season.
However, the 65-year-old Briton made it clear what it could look like: «We could have a very closed society, the teams would come with charter flights, we could bring them down and ensure that everyone was tested and that there was no risk to anyone. » Brawn emphasized that one of the big problems is likely to be travelling, and in some places, there is a risk of self-isolation.
Formula 1 is currently at a standstill. The series has brought its factory holidays planned for summer forward and extended it to five weeks. The races in Australia, Bahrain, Vietnam, China, defeat, Spain, Monaco, Azerbaijan and Canada were cancelled or postponed indefinitely. Industry leader Mercedes and other UK-based teams are committed to the manufacture of ventilators and fans.
The Ferrari racing team, in which the Sars-CoV-2 virus is particularly raging, also closed its museums weeks ago. Now the carmaker from Maranello in northern Italy has started the “Back on Track” program. The work is to be resumed in several steps – with the greatest possible protection for the employees.
Ferrari’s Formula 1 team boss Mattia Binotto did not want to rule out the start of the season in early July. The question was “very difficult” to answer, but he also said. Binotto expects a clearer picture at the end of May.
Originally 22 races had been planned for this year, more than ever since the first World Cup in 1950. What would have paid off for the teams through additional TV revenue is now becoming a journey into the unknown?
McLaren, Williams and Racing Point sent many employees on short-time work, other teams could do the same. Former Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone already pleaded for this session to be cancelled entirely. However, the 89-year-old left it open whether he would have thought the same way as a boss with the aim of maximum profit optimization during his term of office or rather would not have forged a daring emergency plan.