New restrictions expected to be brought in by the UK government have cast doubt over the viability of a British Grand Prix.
The new rules are expected to state that anybody who enters the UK will now have to observe a mandatory 14-day period of self-isolation, unless they have come from the Republic of Ireland, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man.
This would have to be done at a declared private residence, and spot-checks could be made on the address to make sure the rule is being followed.
According to reports, airlines have been told to expect these restrictions to be implemented by the end of May.
Formula 1 bosses are planning to start the 2020 season with a double-header at the Red Bull Ring in Austria, starting with a race weekend from 3-5 July, before moving on to Silverstone in the UK for multiple rounds.
This though presents the first issue as personnel may have to self-isolate for 14 days under the new rules, meaning they wouldn’t be able to honour the July 19 slot on the calendar if rounds were held in Austria on the two previous weekends.
Seven of the ten Formula 1 teams have bases in the United Kingdom.
The other issue would then be getting the overseas teams into England for a British Grand Prix – in theory team personnel from Ferrari, AlphaTauri and Alfa Romeo would have to self-isolate for 14 days before they could start preparing to go racing.
However, it has not been confirmed yet whether or not these rules will apply only to air passengers, while it’s possible that lorry drivers and those shipping vital goods to the UK could be exempt according to reports, which could clear the way for Formula 1 to race at Silverstone as planned.
The series has already revealed its plans to keep personnel safe which involves regular testing and strict limits on the number of people in the paddock and their freedom of movement.