Chinese F1 Grand Prix in Danger as Country Suspends all Motorsports Activity Due to Coronavirus Outbreak

Published 01/23/2020, 8:22 AM EST


The Chinese Grand Prix is in danger of being rescheduled or canceled. Following a massive outbreak of Coronavirus, the local authorities have canceled all motorsport events in China till April.

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The future of the Chinese Grand Prix

The Federation of Automobile and Motorcycle Sports of People’s Republic of China (CAMF) made the announcement earlier today. The Federation has announced the suspension of all motor racing activities in the country due to the deadly Coronavirus.

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The Formula 1 calendar will have a whopping 22 races. This will result in major restrictions when it comes to rescheduling the event. If the situation worsens, Formula 1 may be forced to cancel the race altogether.

As it stands, the Chinese Grand Prix is scheduled to take place on April 19th. The race weekend would begin with free practice on the 17th. Luckily, the race weekend is not a consecutive one or followed by another race in the succeeding week.

The logistics of formula 1 are enormous and planned many months in advance. Any changes would have a serious effect on the teams’ preparation for the weekend. It is not uncommon to see teams lacking essential parts due to a holdup in shipping or transport.

Formula 1’s options

Should the Chinese GP still go ahead as planned, it would still place a major burden on the FIA. The health and safety of drivers are of paramount importance as it could even have a snowball effect on future events.

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The recent outbreak of the Coronavirus originated in China. Wuhan-a major Chinese city was at the epicenter of the outbreak. The Shanghai international circuit is approximately 530 miles from the quarantined city of Wuhan.

The Chinese GP traditionally happens at the start of the year. The event was first held in 2004 with Rubens Barrichello winning for Ferrari. Lewis Hamilton won the most recent event which also coincided with F1 celebrating 1000 races.

The Shanghai International Circuit hasn’t always provided the best wheel to wheel action.

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The 2019 race left many fans unimpressed and they wanted to drop the event from the calendar. The initial reaction from fans was that of indifference on seeing the latest news.

Now, the fans and F1 community await the reaction from Liberty Media – including FOM’s official stand on the issue.

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Abhishek Bharadwaj

720 articles

Abhishek Bharadwaj is an F1 author and content strategist at EssentiallySports. Having joined ES in January 2020, he has over 700 articles to his name. While he was first introduced to the world of F1 in 2006, he started religiously following the sport in 2012 and has had an undying passion for it ever since.

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