Steiner expects ‘cancellations, not changes’ to calendar

Michelle Foster
Haas driver Nikita Mazepin alongside Mick Schumacher in the British GP. Silverstone July 2021.

Nikita Mazepin alongside Haas team-mate Mick Schumacher during the British Grand Prix. Silverstone July 2021.

Following F1’s release of an updated calendar at Spa, Guenther Steiner says he doesn’t expect any more changes, from here on there’ll only be “cancellations”.

Although Formula 1 bosses had hoped for a 23-race calendar, last time out at Spa F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali conceded that was impossible this year and instead released an updated 22-race schedule.

The Japanese Grand Prix had been dropped while a ‘TBC’ stood in the place of the Australian GP, both victims of the pandemic.

But while F1 is hoping that what was set out last weekend will be the schedule, there are questions about Mexico and Brazil as both countries remain on the UK’s red list for travel.

This has prompted talk of a possible second race at the Circuit of the Americas, but that would once again involve changing the dates of other races.

Haas team boss Steiner says that’s not going to happen.

“If there are changes, I think there will be more cancellations and not any changes anymore because we are just running out of weekends at the moment,” said Steiner.

“There is not a lot you can do anymore.

“If something will happen, depending always on the corona[virus], at the moment FOM and Stefano [Domenicali, F1 CEO] are pushing hard to get this calendar to the end like it is now but you never know.”

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The Italian feels last weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix drama, the result of the weather, was yet another clear sign to Formula 1 that they cannot control everything, and that includes the pandemic.

He told GPFans: “As we saw last weekend, we don’t have nature under control so if the pandemic hits hard in one of the countries we are going to, I think the only option is to cancel the event.

“I don’t think there is a big option to change it to another place because there is just not enough time.

“If you think, in a little bit more than three months the season is over.”