Despite the coronavirus epidemic in China, the Formula 1 Grand Prix to be held in April in Shanghai is not affected for the moment.
On Thursday, the Motor Sports Federation of the People’s Republic of China announced that a rally scheduled for February 12-14 will not take place due to the health alert following the outbreak of the new virus which has already killed 17 people.
The centre of the outbreak, the city of Wuhan, is currently under lockdown, as authorities have closed down its transport network in an attempt to limit the spread of the virus. Later in the day, authorities also decided to cancel Chinese New Year celebrations, as the city of Wuhan is now cut off from the world under quarantine.
Part of the authorities’ efforts to stop the spread of the epidemic appears to be to prevent large gatherings, with sporting events now in the spotlight.
The Chinese Motor Sports Federation issued a message that all motor racing would now be banned until April, but soon this message was removed by the federation, causing confusion over the holding of the Chinese Grand Prix in April.
The Chinese F1 Grand Prix is due to take place over the weekend of April 19, but at the moment it is still far too early for an official decision to be taken by the authorities on a possible cancellation of the event.
The disease has spread rapidly to several countries including Japan, Singapore and the USA, and Tedros Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO, said in a press conference held in Geneva on Thursday that the outbreak poses a “very high risk” in China, as well as regionally and globally.
As of Thursday evening, 584 cases have now been reported, including 17 deaths. The vast majority of cases (575) have been reported in China.
Spotted: Hamilton driving a McLaren yesterday
Spotted just yesterday in Beverley Hills (USA), Mercedes F1 driver Lewis Hamilton was seen driving a McLaren F1 supercar – the legendary car designed by Formula 1 designer Gordon Murray in the 1990’s.
It’s unknown to TJ13 whether he actually owns the vehicle, but chances are that he doesn’t. Hamilton is known to own an extensive collection of exotic cars, including a McLaren P1…. READ MORE ON THIS STORY