The promoters of the Chinese Grand Prix are looking to postpone the race and have it take place later in the year instead.
After the race was cancelled in 2020 due to the global pandemic, the plan was for it to return early on in the 2021 campaign.
Specifically, it was chosen to be the third race of the season and is scheduled to take place on April 11.
However, with the number of COVID-19 cases rising throughout the world and global restrictions being upped, promoters are in discussions with the sport about postponing it.
“We have been in contact [with F1] via conference call almost every week”, Yibin Yang, the general manager of race promoter Juss Event, said as per Autosport.
“Despite the calendar being in place as usual, I think it’s hugely uncertain the F1 race would take place in the first half of the year, in April.
“We aim to swap it to the second half of the year, and we have formally submitted the request that we hope to move it to the second half of the year.”
While, like the Australian Grand Prix, which is also set to be postponed, the hope is that the race can be moved to later in the year, there is no guarantee that that would be a possibility.
With various other sporting events taking place in Shanghai, the city operations may simply be too busy to host an F1 race.
“To move it to the second half of the year, it depends on the plan of the city government,” Yang added.
“If we put all international events to the second half of the year, it will be over the capacity for the city. To host any event successively requires the mass public recourses, such as police and health departments.
“If we have to host all major events in the second half of the year, it will face a lack of public recourses, as well as the conflicts in terms of marketing between each other.”
If it is indeed postponed, that will leave two free slots on the calendar in April, and according to Autosport, a race in Portimao will replace the Chinese Grand Prix and will be followed by another in Imola.
With the second half of the season already busy, fitting in both the Australian and Chinese Grand Prix in will be difficult.