Formula 1: 2020 Chinese Grand Prix abandoned due to coronavirus

April’s Chinese Grand Prix has been scrapped due to the coronavirus outbreak, reducing the 2020 Formula 1 schedule to 21 races.

The Chinese Grand Prix was scheduled to take place at Shanghai International Circuit on Sunday, April 19, serving as the fourth of an all-time record 22 races on the 2020 Formula 1 schedule.

That will not be the case. Due to the coronavirus outbreak, the race will not go on as initially planned.

Here is what Formula 1 had to say in a statement about the matter.

“The Chinese Grand Prix has always been a very important part of the F1 calendar and the fans are always incredible. We all look forward to racing in China as soon as possible and wish everyone in the country the best during this difficult time.”

There is a chance that the race could be postponed, but because of how congested the schedule is later in the year, this is unlikely, as it would be a challenge to find a date that would avoid creating three consecutive race weekends.

Additionally, a swap between the Chinese Grand Prix and another race has already been ruled out.

Many events in China have already been canceled due to the coronavirus outbreak, including the Formula E race in Sanya that was scheduled to take place on Saturday, March 21.

The 16-turn, 3.388-mile (5.452-kilometer) Shanghai International Circuit road course in Jiading, Shanghai, China has hosted Formula 1 races since the 2004 season, and it has hosted one of the first four races of each season since 2009.

With the race now not scheduled to take place on Sunday, April 19, there will be a four-week break between the season’s third and fourth races, which are the two additions to this year’s schedule. This effectively creates a “spring break” much like the sport’s annual summer break.

The season’s third race, the inaugural Vietnamese Grand Prix, is scheduled to take place on Sunday, April 5 at Hanoi Street Circuit. The season’s fifth (now fourth) race, the Dutch Grand Prix, is scheduled to take place on Sunday, May 3 at Circuit Zandvoort.

The 2020 Formula 1 season is still scheduled to begin as planned on Sunday, March 15 at Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit in Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia with the Australian Grand Prix despite the Australian Bushfire Crisis.