MOSCOW, May 14. /TASS/. This year’s FIA (the International Automobile Federation) Formula 1 World Championship Grand Prix in Turkey has been cancelled, the press office of the world’s most prestigious motor racing competitions announced in a statement on Friday.
The UK government recently placed Turkey on its red list of anti-COVID-19 travel restrictions, which means that all F1 racers and accompanying staff had to undergo a 10-day quarantine once they are back from the race in Turkey.
"Following the announcement of new travel restrictions imposed by several countries in which F1 teams are based, affecting travel from Turkey, Formula 1 is today providing an update on the implications for the 2021 calendar," the statement reads.
"Following discussions with the promoter in Turkey and relevant stakeholders, it will not be possible to have the race in Turkey between 11th - 13th June," according to FIA F1 management.
On April 28, Formula 1 executives made a decision to replace this year’s initially scheduled Formula 1 Grand Prix Du Canada 2021 with the Turkish Grand Prix. The world’s governing body of automobile sports stated at that time: "Due to the ongoing international travel restrictions in place in Canada it became impossible for Formula 1 to enter the country without a mandatory 14 day quarantine."
The F1 Turkish Grand Prix was held on a regular basis since 2005 before it was excluded from the calendar of FIA F1 World Championship in 2011. However, the racing track in Turkey was back on the calendar of the F1 racing last year after a number of countries decided against hosting races as a preventive measure against the global spread of the novel coronavirus.
As a result of today’s change in the FIA Formula 1 racing calendar and due to the cancellation of the much-awaited race in Turkey, the Grand Prix in France was shifted to a one-week early period.
"We can confirm that there will now be two races in Austria, back to back, with the first race, the Styrian Grand Prix, taking place on 25th-27th June and the Austrian Grand Prix taking place on its original date on 2nd - 4th July," the statement from FIA F1 continued.
"As a result of this change the French Grand Prix will move one week earlier to 18th - 20th June, with all tickets for the event valid for the earlier date," according to the statement. "This means that there continues to be 23 planned races for the 2021 season."
"We are grateful to the Turkish promoter for their support in recent days and the recognition that the current travel situation made the race in June impossible. We are equally grateful to the Provence-Alpes-Cote d’Azur region and French Grand Prix promoter for their flexibility, and the Austrian promoter for their enthusiasm to host a second race at short notice following the huge success of the two races in Austria in 2020," the statement added.
Commenting on the decision, FIA Formula 1 its President and CEO Stefano Domenicali said: "We were all looking forward to racing in Turkey but the travel restrictions in place have meant we are not able to be there in June."
"Formula 1 has shown again that it is able to react quickly to developments and find solutions and we are delighted that we will have a double header in Austria meaning our season remains at 23 races," F1 chief Domenicali continued. "I want to thank the promoter and authorities in Turkey for all of their efforts in recent weeks and want to thank the promoters in France and Austria for their speed, flexibility and enthusiasm in accommodating this solution."
The 2021 FIA Formula One World Championship was initially scheduled to consist of 23 Grands Prix, and this year’s world championship of the most prestigious auto racing series boosted off on March 26-28 with FIA F1 Bahrain Grand Prix.
The 2021 F1 World Championship’s 5th Grand Pix is set to be held at the legendary racing track in Monaco on May 20-23.