No more podium ceremonies in new normal F1

Date published: June 13 2020

Mexican GP podium ceremony Sebastian Vettel Lewis Hamilton Valtteri Bottas

F1 managing director Ross Brawn has confirmed that the traditional podium ceremony will be absent this season.

The series is working to restructure how a race weekend works in order to comply with the new COVID-19 guidelines introduced by the FIA, and part of these changes will make for very different looking pre and post-race ceremonies.

“Because of the implementation of the procedures, we need to be safe and sure of the COVID-19 situation,” Brawn told F1.com.

“The practises we have had in the past just can’t be done.

“So every aspect from the time teams arrive to the time they leave has been thought through, and it’s not completely finalised, but we’re working with the FIA to polish it.

“The podium procedure can’t happen, but we’re looking at doing something on the grid after the race. One option would be to line the cars up on the track and the drivers will stand in front of cars.

“We can’t present the trophies, as you can’t have someone in close proximity presenting a trophy, but we have worked it out, we have plans and procedures, we’re looking at how we can present it on TV.”

And the various events which happen before a race will require a rethink, including the drivers’ parade.

“The [Sunday morning] drivers’ parade won’t happen as we can’t put 20 drivers on the back of a truck and take it round the track,” Brawn confirmed.

“So instead we will interview with each one of them in front of the garage. There’s plenty of ways we can engage without compromising health and safety.

“Things like the national anthem, you can’t have all the drivers grouped together.

“And you can’t have our FIA Future Stars stood in front of them.

“The FIA Future Stars will still be part of the show virtually. They will have the uniforms sent to them and they’ll send us videos of them with a message which we can play, so there are lots of things we can do to make it entertaining.

“I’m 100% confident that we will make it an engaging and exciting product, it will just be different. This is the new norm. How long will this carry on? We don’t know, but this will be the new norm for the rest of the year for sure.”

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