Next year’s Chinese Formula One Grand Prix has been cancelled as a result of the country’s COVID-19 policies, BBC Sport reported.
Whilst F1 Chairman and CEO Stefano Domenicali has not yet officially called off the race, the decision is said to be considered “an inevitability”.
It is said that if the event were to go ahead in April next year, F1 staff would not be given exemptions from quarantine requirements if they contracted the illness. A five-day isolation period has to take place in a specialised centre followed by three days at home.
The race will not be replaced as the sport’s governing body opted against finding an alternate venue – although 23 races will still be a new record.
Formula One is still set for its busiest season ever in 2023, after the 24-race (now 23) calendar was put to a vote in front of the members of the World Motor Sport Council, and was approved by e-vote.
A four-week gap will now be in next year’s schedule between the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne on 2 April and the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in Baku on 30 April.
Furthermore, the BBC also stated that Domenicali is “said to be holding talks with authorities in Baku in an attempt to persuade them to move the race forward to 23 April” – but he is meeting resistance.