Formula One urges the British government to grant an exemption from quarantine rules deemed “impossible” to comply with.
The 2020 Formula One season has been severely disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic, resulting in the postponement or cancellation of 10 of the first scheduled Grand Prix.
Formula One officials are working on a revised calendar and the start of the 2020 season in Austria in July.
A “biosphere” would then be created in the paddock, as well as regular testing of staff, to reduce the risk of infection both for those in the paddock and for cross-contamination with the local population.
The teams would then travel to Silverstone, Great Britain, for two more races on 26 July and 2 August.
Silverstone has reached an agreement in principle to host two races, but these plans are set to be thwarted by the British government’s 14-day quarantine period for all incoming passengers.
Under the measures announced last week, a mandatory 14-day quarantine period is to be introduced, with no end date for the regulations, making long-term planning more problematic for international events.
The UK Government has recently referred to an exemption from the quarantine period for a privileged few and Formula One has entered into dialogue with officials to try to waive this requirement, provided they can prove that staff are virus-free.
But it is increasingly unlikely that Formula One will be granted an exemption, which could jeopardise all plans for the discipline, starting with the British GP.
“A 14-day quarantine would make a British Grand Prix impossible this year. ” said an F1 spokesman.
“In addition, it has a major impact on tens of thousands of F1-related jobs and supply chains.
“We would return to the UK on planes occupied solely by F1 and all personnel would be tested, making quarantine totally unnecessary. If all elite sports are to return, exemptions must be made.”
TJ13 reported some time ago that the recently upgraded circuit in Portugal in the town of Portimao has been added to the provisional calandar as a backup race should Silverstone not happen. It has since been learned that Hockenheim in Germany has been added to that list.
These provisions had been made in case Silverstone can’t host their double header.
That said, should the UK Government not issue a wavier for the quarantine period, then the Formula 1 season in 2020 will not be possible at all.
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