2020 F1 season start ‘not official’ yet – Todt

Jean Todt
Jean Todt

(GMM) The re-start of F1's corona-marred 2020 season is not yet official, according to FIA president Jean Todt.

While it appears as though the season will begin in Austria with back-to-back 'ghost races' in early July, the government is yet to rubber-stamp the plan.

After that, the sport's plan is to move on to Silverstone. But the British government's mandatory 14-day quarantine for international visitors is a huge problem.

"If all elite sport is to return to TV, then exemptions must be provided," a spokesperson for Formula 1 said.

"A 14-day quarantine would make it impossible to have a British GP this year. Additionally, it has a major impact on literally tens of thousands of jobs linked to F1 and supply chains."

Hockenheim, in Germany, is another European circuit willing to take part in the 'ghost race' plan, but a financial deal is not yet in place with F1.

"We would very much like one or two races. We would like to have four," a source at the former German GP venue joked.

"Regardless of whether we get a race this year or not, we are proud that Formula 1 contacted us even though we hadn't delivered the big money in recent years," Auto Motor und Sport quoted the source as saying.

FIA president Todt admits that F1's plans to re-start in July are still not set in concrete.

"At the moment the idea is to start the world championship in Europe in early July," he told Italy's Sky Sport. "But there is no official confirmation.

"We will have to analyze the evolution of the pandemic and follow the positions of governments, whose measures could affect our decisions," the Frenchman added.

"Considering the situation, we have to be flexible. Our will is to start as soon as possible, but as with other sports there will certainly be totally new conditions to prioritize the safety of all," said Todt.