Why Has the Imola Grand Prix Race Schedule Changed? What are the New Timings?

Published 04/16/2021, 3:08 PM EDT
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – DECEMBER 13: George Russell of Great Britain driving the (63) Williams Racing FW43 Mercedes during the F1 Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi at Yas Marina Circuit on December 13, 2020 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images)


The Bahrain Grand Prix was one of the most thrilling races in recent Formula One history. The next round of the season takes us to Imola for the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix. The race weekend will take place from 16-18th of April.

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However, the timing of the session has been changed as the Duke of Edinburgh, unfortunately, passed away and his funeral will be held on Saturday. So, in order for the funeral not to clash with the session, they had to change the timings of their sessions.

The funeral will be held on the 17th of April. The final practice session and the qualifying session from 14:00-15:00 CET, as the royal funeral, will start from 1500.

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Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – Red Bull’s Max Verstappen leads at the start of the race REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Another rule for a race weekend is one that isn’t well established. It requires that the time between the second practice session on Friday and the final practice session on Saturday must be at least 19 hours.

Hence Formula One have moved the practice session on Friday by half an hour. Free practice session 2 will happen between 14:30- 15:30 CET.

Another rule states that there has to be a 19-hour gap between the first two practice sessions. So FP1 will take place between 1100-1200 CET.

A minute’s silence will be held ahead of the qualifying session.

The Formula One community comes together to remember Prince Philip

Formula One team took to social media to honor the Duke of Edinburgh. Most notably, British teams such as McLaren, Aston Martin, and Williams paid respect to the royal family.

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Who’s the broadcasting rights for the Grand Prix

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Fans of Formula One can watch the upcoming Grand Prix on SkySports, they can watch all practice sessions as well as qualifying. Channel 4 can show the highlights of the race.

Formula One F1 – Bahrain Grand Prix – Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain – March 27, 2021 Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll in action during practice REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

Across the UK, other sporting events also changed the schedule so that the funeral timings don’t clash. It is only right that Formula One followed suit and made the necessary changes.

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Arpit Gomes

672 articles

Arpit Gomes is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Currently pursuing his Journalism degree from Xavier’s Institute, he is a big fan of McLaren and their driver Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo. Arpit always looks forward to the paddock moving to Spa and drivers dealing with the exciting Eau Rouge corner as well the straight at Monza.

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