Drivers’ representative Alex Wurz has described Formula One’s safety planning as “immaculate” and believes the season will start in July.
Wurz, chairman of the Grand Prix Drivers’ Association, discussed the measures being taken in a teleconference with key figures from F1, including Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and FIA president Jean Todt.
The current plan is to begin racing behind closed doors in Austria on July 5 and Wurz was encouraged by what he heard.
He told The Guardian: “They are really trying their best and doing it in a typical F1 safety way, which is immaculate.
“The drivers have been reassured today, I can only underline that. I feel confident that the right steps are being made in an efficient time frame and unless outside circumstances intervene I believe we could start the 2020 season in Austria in July.
“Motor racing has been a pioneer in safety. Right now it’s not about saving a driver’s life or a spectator or a marshal but the whole safety protocol, analysing it and identifying strengths and weaknesses. What we have now, the idea of a closed-loop system at a race venue is really impressive.”
The biggest threat to the plans already has been identified as a second outbreak of coronavirus.
And Wurz admitted that such an event would soon shift the thinking and send Formula 1 back to the drawing board.
He said: “Things can change quite quickly because you have many nations and nationalities involved. If half of the paddock was stuck in quarantine that would throw a spanner in the gearbox of going racing in July.”