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Chinese GP again at risk due to zero-COVID policy

Chinese GP again at risk due to zero-COVID policy

26-10-2022 12:40 Last update: 13:09


The chances of there actually being 24 races in 2023 seem to have gone down a notch. According to F1 journalist Joe Saward, the Chinese Grand Prix is in doubt for the fourth year in a row.

China fights against coronavirus

Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, the rules in China have been very strict. While much of the world is now 'open' again and most Grands Prix are once again being held with full grandstands, China is holding off for a while. The Chinese Communist Party held a congress in capital Beijing in which it made it clear that the zero-COVID policy remains in force for the time being.

According to Saward, it is therefore not possible to race on Chinese soil in 2023. "This means that it is almost inconceivable for there to be a race in Shanghai in 2023 because of restrictions on spectators and, more importantly, the quarantine requirements that the F1 circus would face, which are currently impossible to fulfil," Saward writes on own website.

'Only' 23 races instead of 24?

Saward does not expect the government to make an exception for Formula 1, as this would provoke popular discontent. The Chinese Grand Prix is currently scheduled for 16 April and is unlikely to be replaced. This means there is a gap in the calendar of four weeks without a Grand Prix. Still, perhaps a good time for F1 to contact the Sepang circuit in advance?

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