The FIA have announced an updated calendar for the remainder of the 2021 Formula 1 season, and it sees a reduction in events from twenty-three to twenty-two races.
The cancellation of the Japanese Grand Prix due to an increase in coronavirus cases in the country has meant the remaining events were subject to change, and the FIA have decided not to replace the Suzuka International Racing Course on the calendar.
There still is one race yet to be announced, possibly in Qatar, but a few of the other remaining races have found new dates as the FIA attempt to minimise disruption and avoid any unnecessary quarantining.
The triple-header to start the second half of the season remains unchanged, with this weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix being followed by the return of the Dutch Grand Prix and then the Italian Grand Prix, while the Russian Grand Prix also maintain its September 26 date.
However, after Russia there is now a week gap before the Turkish Grand Prix on October 10, while there is a further week’s gap between Turkey and the United States Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas on October 24.
Should Turkey not happen due to its own coronavirus status, a return to the Autodromo Internazionale del Mugello has been muted, while the Nürburgring in Germany has also said they would be open to hosting a race should they be needed.
The double-header of the United States and Mexico has been split now by a week, with the race at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez now being held at the start of a potential triple-header that will also see the return to Brazil for the Sao Paulo Grand Prix (14 November) and the final TBA race on 21 November. Qatar has been mentioned for a first ever race in the country, while another race in Bahrain is also a possibility.
The final two races remain the same, with the first ever Saudi Arabia Grand Prix on 5 December and the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on 12 December.
“We are very pleased to announce the updates to the 2021 calendar following extensive discussions with the promoters and national authorities,” said Stefano Domenicali, the President and CEO of Formula 1.
“The pandemic continues to present the season with challenges, but we have proven we can adapt and we are confident we can deliver a record breaking twenty-two races this year despite a global pandemic.”
“I want to thank the promoters in Brazil, Mexico and Turkey for their patience and flexibility and we will provide the details of the final addition soon. This season is proving to be an incredible battle on the track and this is hugely exciting for our fans around the world and we look forward to the intensity continuing in the races ahead.”