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Silverstone: We can host two successive races

NEWS STORY
20/04/2020

As F1 bosses continue to plan a revised 2020 schedule that will likely be Euro-centric, one of the proposals being put forward is for certain tracks to host successive races, either on the same weekend or on successive weekends.

Though the idea of running a race at Silverstone on a reverse layout is looking less and less likely, Stuart Pringle, the circuit's managing director, is confident the facility can host successive races, having discussed the idea with F1 bosses.

"We have discussed all sorts of permutations including hosting two races over one weekend and two races over consecutive weekends," he tells The Guardian.

"I have complete confidence in our ability to put on these events," he adds. "We have a lot of experience, a lot of knowledge, we can turn that on definitely.

"F1 has been working very hard to try and work out what the solution for the world championship is," he continues. "We have been in regular contact with them, and have been asked could we hold a race or two and could they be behind closed doors. The answer is absolutely, we are open to looking into anything and everything."

As it stands, France is due to host the season 'opener' on 28 June, but the extension of the ban on large gatherings at public events has basically ruled that out, as has a similar move in Belgium.

Consequently, Austria is on pole to host the first race of the year on 5 July, with Silverstone, which hosted the first ever round of the Formula One World Championship in 1950, set to follow.

Both events would almost certainly be held behind closed doors.

"I think F1 will make a calendar-wide decision in the earlier part of May," said Pringle, Ross Brawn having targeted a schedule of up to 19 races. "They can't set this ball rolling unless they have a solution that stands a fighting chance of running successfully over multiple races.

"That timescale would suit us if we didn't have to put in the infrastructure for accommodating the public," he added, referring to the prospect of the event being held 'in camera', as it were.

However, despite F1's obvious eagerness to get the season underway, Pringle admits that any decision will need to be made with the approval of the government.

"It's important any discussion of a return to racing is appropriate," he said. "Otherwise we risk being a distraction to the main message which is stay at home and we don't want to do that."

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1. Posted by Bill Hopgood, 20/04/2020 20:53

"I was just thinking about how to run a race considering the number of support, officials and volunteers required.
Also, there isn't really any way to physically distance marshals and recovery teams let alone what Nick A rightly brings up about how the usual volunteers can afford to get there, assuming they actually want to.

I'm a volunteer (flag marshal mostly) and should have been at a meeting last Sunday.

I missed greatly not being there however acceptance that there isn't anything I can do about that is one way to get through. I'm not thinking about the next chance to be at an event as it can get too demoralising.

That's not a defeatist point of view but realistic as NZ looks to get out of lockdown level 4 and go to level 3 next week.
Level 3 is basically online purchases from non essential business as well as ordering take out food.

And, here in NZ, we are in much better shape with our victim stats than the UK for example so I can only imagine trying to get my head round travel and being around a lot of people in a country that has a lot more people per million with COVID-19 and victims too, and that doesn't even count those in aged care facilities for some reason.
"

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2. Posted by Motorsport-fan, 20/04/2020 14:15

"@Nick A
Perhaps F1 should cover there costs as well, they have them for free for long enough."

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3. Posted by Nick A, 20/04/2020 13:31

"" Closed doors" is one thing for the teams but something else for the army of unpaid volunteer officials and marshals needed for the organisation and safety of the event many of whom will have been effected by this disease either physically or financially . There just may not be enough of these volunteers to step up to the plate . "

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4. Posted by habentsen, 20/04/2020 8:40

"Silverstone is a great track and if the F1 bosses ever wanted to try reverse grids, this is the perfect opportunity. Same track, one qualifying, two races. One with normal grid and one with reverse."

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