‘New tracks, 2021 races and no fans at the start’

Michelle Foster
Vettel Monza 2018

New Concorde Agreement placed on the "back burner".

This year’s Formula 1 circus could yet head to venues that were not on the orginal calendar in order to reduce travel time, says Chase Carey.

The 2020 season remains on hold until at least the beginning of July after one by one the races in the first half of the championship was either cancelled or postponed.

Austria is, at least things stand today, set to be the season-opener, holding two races in early July before Formula 1 moves onto Silverstone.

Although that is not set in stone.

Instead F1 chief Carey has revealed Formula 1 may hit up a few other tracks in Europe to cut down on time spent travelling.

Already Imola and Hockenheim have stated that they are keen to grab a slot on the calendar while Portimao also has the FIA grading needed to host a F1 grand prix.

“We’ve been working tirelessly since Australia and we’re actively engaged with our promoters in putting together a 2020 race calendar,” Carey told investors.

“We have two primary challenges – identifying locations where we can hold the race, and determining how we transport all necessary parties and their equipment to that location for a race.

“We’re in discussion with all of our promoters, as well as some tracks that are not currently on our 2020 calendar, to make sure we explore all options.

“Our goal is to launch the season on the weekend of July 4-5th in Austria, and it’s likely that we race the weekend of July 11-12th in Austria as well.

“We’re in the advanced stages of putting together a schedule of additional European races through early September, including races during the traditional August break.

“We plan to race in Eurasia, Asia, the Americas, in September, October, November, before finishing in the Gulf in Bahrain and Abu Dhabi in December.

“We hope to have a calendar with 15-18 races. We expect the early part of the calendar to be races without fans, but we hope to allow fans to attend in the latter part of the year.”

Carey is hoping to wrap up the season in December but says Liberty Media is leaving open the option to hold a few races in early 2021.

“We’re obviously going to take a fairly long break through the holidays, you’re not going to race in the holiday weeks. But it is an option available to us that we again have to work through with our promoters and an array of parties to get there.

“But it is something we’ve considered and talked about. I would say that our goal is to finish a couple of weeks later than our original date, but to finish in mid-December, ahead of the holidays.”

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