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Turkish Grand Prix postponed as F1 shuffles calendar

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Berlin, May 14 (IANS) The Turkish Grand Prix will not take place as scheduled next month and could be held later in the season as a consequence of the coronavirus numbers in the country, Formula One said on Friday.

Britain and other countries have put Turkey on their ‘red list’ for travel meaning those returning from visits there must go into lengthy period of mandatory quarantine.

With several F1 teams based in the UK, organisers agreed to postpone the June 13 race with the hope of holding it later in the year, reports DPA.

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For the same reason football’s UEFA has moved the May 29 Champions League final between English teams Manchester City and Chelsea from Istanbul to Porto.

An additional race will be held in Austria with the Styrian Grand Prix on June 27 now a week before the original Austrian Grand Prix on July 4.

This extra race means the French Grand Prix will be brought forward a week to June 20.

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“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,” Stefano Domenicali, F1 president and CEO said.

“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.

“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.

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“We have had very good conversations will all the other promoters since the start of the year and continue to work closely with them during this period.”

The Turkish race at Istanbul Park returned to the altered 2020 season amid the coronavirus pandemic and was retained this year in place of the Canadian Grand Prix.

Whether or not it will be held later in the season is doubtful given the already crammed calendar though F1 said “the promoter has requested that we look at the potential opportunity for the race to be rescheduled later in the season if possible.”

–IANS

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