British GP decision by end of April, say F1 chiefs

London (AFP) –


Formula One and Silverstone chiefs say they have until the end of April to decide if the British Grand Prix will go ahead in July.

The first eight Formula One races of the 2020 season have been called off due to the coronavirus.

The Canadian Grand Prix is the next scheduled race, in mid-June, with the British Grand Prix due to take place just over a month later.

Last week, governing body Motorsport UK extended its suspension of events in Britain until the end of June.

With so many sporting events already cancelled or postponed, it is unlikely Silverstone will be able to stage the event but organisers are keeping their options open.

"Silverstone and Formula 1 remain in close dialogue regarding the ongoing situation and are assessing the feasibility of holding the British Grand Prix on 17th-19th July," a joint statement from Silverstone and Formula One said on Wednesday.

"We fully appreciate that other UK sporting events in July have taken decisions regarding their events, but it is important to highlight that their logistics and sporting arrangements differ from Silverstone's and, therefore, our timeline gives us until the end of April to make a final decision.

"The safety of our fans, colleagues and the F1 community will be our priority and we will continue to engage with the appropriate authorities."

It is understood that Formula One are keen to publish a revised calendar for the season before any further races are postponed.

The season-opening Australian Grand Prix was scrapped at the last minute after a McLaren employee who had travelled to Melbourne tested positive for the virus.

The Monaco Grand Prix has also been cancelled, with others keen to find dates later in the year.