Formula 1 could arrange another crucial meeting in two weeks’ time to discuss the development of the ongoing coronavirus crisis and the next measures the sport has to take in order to manage the situation.
Formula 1 bosses got together with the FIA and Liberty Media via a video conference on March 19 to discuss the current situation regarding the coronavirus outbreak. During the meeting, a set of measures has been defined in a bid to react to the severe situation that is set to test the financial limits of teams.
The technical revamp for 2021 has been postponed until 2022 while it has also been agreed that teams will use their actual chassis in the coming season with several other parts also expected to be carried over into next year. The sport’s traditional summer shutdown has also been brought forward to March/April and its duration has been increased from two to three weeks.
The crucial budget cap, set for 2021, has been not changed though. In fact, the sport is working on further ways to save costs in a time when income for teams is practically down to zero.
AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost hinted that another video conference could be arranged in two weeks’ time to re-evaluate the ever-changing situation.
"During our last video conference between the team bosses, the FIA and Liberty Media, we agreed to meet again in mid-April - depending on the situation - to discuss the new situation", Tost is quoted as saying by Motorsport-Magazin.com.
#F1 - Following unanimous agreement between the FIA, @F1 and all teams, the implementation of the Technical Regulations due to take effect from the 2021 season will be postponed until 2022.https://t.co/Sc9EFEGL2O— FIA (@fia) March 19, 2020
A super season running into next year?
Eight grands prix have already been postponed or cancelled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. With further races possibly also facing the same fate, it is very much possible that the 2020 F1 season will kick off in the second half of the year. As the regulations state that the season has tor un on three different continents and consists of at least 8 races to be considered as a world championship, it has emerged that the actual season can run into January 2021.
Speaking to Sky Italia, Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto confirmed that all F1 outfits have shown willingness to provide Liberty Media, the sport’s Commercial Rights’ Holder with the flexibility to re-arrange the race calendar in a way that is feasible for all parties including FIA, the promoters and the teams.
"We are engaged in constant dialogue. I have felt, along with the other team principals, that these are crucial moments. With regards to the timetable, we have given [Chase] Carey and the FIA the freedom to define the calendar as they need to under these conditions.”
The list of possible scenarios include tweaks to the weekend format that could see events consist of two days instead of the traditional three-day schedule. Another change could be to run the championship into next year if it is needed to guarantee the season its world championship status.
"We can also have two-day weekends, with free practice moved to Saturday morning, so that we can meet the logistical needs in case of grands prix being close together. In addition, the current shutdown leaves room for the possibility of being able to compete in August if there are conditions to be able to do so. If this [move] allows us to guarantee a more complete 2020 world championship, with the following season not starting until March, there is great availability for that,” the Swiss-Italian concluded.