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Coronavirus: F1 CEO apologises for disruption and pledges to resume season when possible

By Ryan Benson

London, March 18: Formula One CEO Chase Carey apologised to fans for the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic and pledged to resume the 2020 season as soon as possible in an open letter released on Tuesday.

The F1 season was due to resume this past weekend with the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne, however it was cancelled in the wake of McLaren withdrawing following one of their crew members testing positive for COVID-19.

Races in Bahrain, Vietnam and China have had to be temporarily shelved as well, leaving F1 with a revised start date of May 3.

Ross Brawn, F1's managing director of motorsports, has since suggested the postponed races could take place in August when the season typically takes a four-week break.

Carey was unable to offer much of an update given the "fluidity" of the situation, but he stressed F1 will resume at the earliest possible opportunity.

In an open letter published to the F1 website, Carey wrote: "We wanted to provide some thoughts and perspectives from last week as we address the coronavirus pandemic.

"First and foremost, our priority is the health and safety of the fans, teams, and organisations of Formula One, as well as wider society.

"We apologise to those fans affected by the cancellation in Australia, as well as the postponement of the other races to date. These decisions are being made by Formula One, the FIA, and our local promoters in rapidly changing and evolving circumstances, but we believe they are the right and necessary ones. We also want to extend our thoughts to those already affected, including those in the Formula One family.

"We recognise everyone wants to know what comes next for Formula One in 2020. We cannot provide specific answers today given the fluidity of the situation. However, we plan to get the 2020 Championship season underway as soon as it's safe to do so.

"We are engaging with experts and officials on a daily basis as we evaluate how we go forward in the next few months."

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Story first published: Wednesday, March 18, 2020, 0:50 [IST]
Other articles published on Mar 18, 2020
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