F1 confirms opening eight races of 2020 season

Silverstone to host a pair of races on August 2 and August 9 as part of revamped European schedule

Formula 1 bosses have revealed the opening eight rounds of the revised 2020 calendar, which will feature a pair of races at Silverstone on August 2 and August 9.

The eight European races announced will start with a pair of races at the Red Bull Ring in Austria on July 5 and July 12, and are the first part of a planned 15-18 race schedule that will also feature events in Asia, the Americas and the Middle East. The two races at Silverstone will be held in August, a few weeks later than the originally planned July dates.

As well as the double-header races in Austria and the UK, the calendar also includes races in Hungary, Spain, Belgium and Italy. The opening races will be closed to spectators, but F1 chairman Chase Carey said: “While we currently expect the season to commence without fans at our races we hope that over the coming months the situation will allow us to welcome them back once it is safe to do, but we know the return of Formula 1 will be a welcome boost to sports fans around the world.”

F1 chiefs added that “the health and safety of all involved will continue to be priority number one,” adding that “a robust and detailed plan” would help to maintain the “highest level of safety with strict procedures in place.”

The publication of the calendar comes after F1 bosses finalised agreements with the six circuits that will host events. There had been doubts over the two races at Silverstone due to the UK government’s incoming 14-day quarantine for all arrivals from overseas, but international sports teams are set to be given an exemption, if they follow key guidelines.

Notably, the calendar release also confirms the names of the extra grands prix that will be held at the Red Bull Ring and Silverstone. Following the British Grand Prix, the second race at the Northamptonshire track will be called the Formula 1 70th Anniversary Grand Prix. Silverstone hosted the first ever championship event in May 1950.

The second race at the Red Bull Ring will be the inaugural Styrian Grand Prix, named after the region of Austria in which the circuit is located.

All eight events will also host rounds of the Formula 2 and Formula 3 championships.

Revised 2020 F1 calendar opening events

July 3-5, Austrian Grand Prix (Red Bull Ring)

July 10-12, Styrian Grand Prix (Red Bull Ring)

July 17-19, Hungarian Grand Prix (Hungaroring)

July 31-August 2, British Grand Prix (Silverstone)

August 7-9, F1 70th Anniversary Grand Prix (Silverstone)

August 14-16, Spanish Grand Prix (Circuit de Cataluya-Barcelona)

August 28-30, Belgian Grand Prix (Spa-Francorchamps)

September 4-6, Italian Grand Prix (Monza)

James Attwood

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