F1 Confirms First Eight Races Of The Contracted 2020 Season
The longest off-season in Formula 1’s 70-year history will finally be brought to a close when the grid forms up for the Red Bull Ring on 3-5 July. This will be the first of two consecutive Grand Prix to be held at the Austrian circuit in 2020, and the first of the opening eight races confirmed thus far.
Announced as part of a proposed schedule back in April, the Red Bull Ring will host the first two F1 races of the 2020 season on consecutive weekends. The first, the Formula 1 Rolex Grosser Preis von Osterreich, will be held on 3-5 July, while the second, the Formula 1 Pirelli Grosser Preis der Steiermark, is set for 10-12 July.
The Hungaroring will host the re-scheduled Hungarian Grand Prix one week later on 17-19 July, ahead of back-to-back races at Silverstone. The first will be promoted as the Formula 1 Pirelli British Grand Prix on 31 July to 2 August, while the second, the Emirates Formula 1 70th Anniversary Grand Prix, is penned in for 7-9 August. Confirmation of the event(s) puts an end to speculation that Silverstone might miss its F1 calendar slot this year, despite the 78th Goodwood Members’ Meeting being re-scheduled to 2021 to make room on the circuit’s schedule.
The rescheduled Spanish Grand Prix will be held at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on 14-16 August, and, following a one-week break, the F1 circus will then travel to Circuit Spa-Francorchamps for the Belgian Grand Prix on 28-30 August. Finally, the Italian Grand Prix, confirmed for Monza on 4-6 September, completes the eight-race European season thus far.
Though there is no word yet which races will take place in October and early November, Suzuka in Japan, the Autódromo José Carlos Pace in Brazil and the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico, already among the last F1 races of the 2020 season before the Covid-19 outbreak, are being heavily speculated as F1 steams ahead with a 15-18-race calendar for 2020. F1 has already confirmed that the Bahrain Grand Prix and the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will close out the season in late November and/or December.
All eight rounds will be supported by the Formula 2 and Formula 3 junior single seater programs, but it’s also been confirmed that each F1 race will take place behind closed doors on safety grounds. That means there will be no crowds in the grandstands and team/track personnel will be kept to a minimum to encourage social distancing.
*Images courtesy of Red Bull Racing, Ferrari, and Mercedes-AMG F1