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Summer break moved to March/April

NEWS STORY
19/03/2020

As F1 bids to rearrange the 2020 calendar, the teams have agreed to bring forward the summer break and compulsory shutdown to March and April.

"In light of the global impact of the COVID-19 coronavirus currently affecting the organisation of Formula One World Championship events, the World Motor Sport Council has approved a change to the 2020 FIA Formula 1 Sporting Regulations, moving the summer shutdown period from July and August to March and April and extending it from 14 to 21 days," said the FIA in a brief statement.

"All competitors must therefore observe a shutdown period of 21 consecutive days during the months of March and/or April."

The change was supported unanimously by both the F1 Strategy Group and F1 Commission.

Red Bull was the first to publicly give its approval to the move.

"As a team we currently plan to shut down on 27th March for a three week period, however due to the ever changing nature of the pandemic there may be some flexibility around these dates," it said.

"Whilst we would all love to return to racing, the severity of this global pandemic is changing by the hour and the impact transcends our sport. We therefore agree with the measures being taken to reduce the risk of transmission and will support any further race postponements that are deemed necessary.

"The health, safety and wellbeing of our Team, guests, fans and the local communities we visit are our absolute priority and we are taking every possible precaution to mitigate the spread of the virus. As such, we will also be taking extra precautions as a Team to protect our workforce while they are in the factory by implementing special working measures, guided by the UK Government and medical professionals.

"We share the disappointment of our fans and partners that purchased tickets to attend this year's postponed Grands Prix and our well wishes go to our McLaren and Pirelli colleagues recovering from the COVID-19 virus, as well as the McLaren team members currently quarantined in Australia."

Sauber (Alfa Romeo) subsequently added that it will observe a shutdown between March 23rd and April 13th, while Ferrari's shutdown will run from March 19 to April 8.

"It is vital that we follow the advice of the authorities and limit all activities as much as possible in order to contain the virus as efficiently as possible," said the Maranello outfit. "We will wait for the situation to improve so that we can return to normality, in our daily lives as well as in sport, including motor racing. In the meantime, our thoughts are with everyone affected by the virus and those working on the front line to combat it.

"Maintaining our distance, but still united, this virus can be defeated."

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1. Posted by Anthony, 18/03/2020 21:43

"Pragmatic reaction to the current crisis."

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