TEHRAN (Iran News) – The Chinese Grand Prix was postponed as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.
The FIA, Formula 1’s governing body, accepted a request from Chinese organizers to postpone the Shanghai race, due to take place on April 19, BBC Sport reported.
In a statement, it added all parties would take the “appropriate amount of time” to discuss potential new dates.
The decision has been made to “ensure the health and safety” of drivers, staff, and fans.
“The Chinese Grand Prix has long been an important part of the F1 calendar with many passionate fans,” the statement continued.
“The FIA F1 community looks forward to racing in China as soon as possible and wishes everyone in the country the best during this difficult time.”
F1 managing director Ross Brawn has previously said there would be efforts to reschedule the race if it could not be held on its original date.
“We will leave open the opportunity to see if the race can run later in the year,” he said.
“China is an enthusiastic, growing market so we’d like to have a race in China.”
The last time a race was postponed was 2011 when the Bahrain Grand Prix was affected by the Islamic awakening uprisings.
The initial intention then was to run the race later in the year but the teams objected and in the end, the race was canceled.
There have now been more than 40,000 cases of the new coronavirus strain worldwide, and it has been declared a global health emergency.
Earlier this month, sports authorities in Shanghai recommended the suspension of all sporting events in the city.
The Shanghai Sports General Association instructed sports bodies to suspend events until the threat from the virus was over.
They were told to “formulate a plan for epidemic prevention to avoid internal infections” and to “implement a daily hygiene management system and strengthen health education to urge employees to protect themselves.”
The virus outbreak has already led to the cancelation of a number of sporting events in China, including the World Athletics Indoor Championships in Nanjing, scheduled for March 13-15, and a race of the all-electric Formula E series in Sanya the following weekend.
Olympic organizers also say they are “seriously concerned” about the spread of coronavirus and the impact it could have on the Tokyo Games in Japan this July and August
- source : Iran Daily, Irannews