F1 2021 Calendar: A provisional race calendar has been presented to teams, with Bahrain reportedly allotted as the venue for pre-season testing in place of Barcelona.
The F1 2020 season has been good, all in all, with 17 races scheduled, ending with Abu Dhabi. No sooner is the current season entering into its final phase, the F1 Commission has met (virtually) and provisionally finalized the F1 2021 Calendar.
Provisionally, as the threat of Covid-19 still looms large in some parts of the globe. The meeting, along with the teams, was attended by FIA president Jean Todt. The outgoing and incoming F1 CEOs Chase Carey and Stefano Domenicali were also present.
Key takeaways from the provisional F1 2021 Calendar
- Bahrain to be the new pre-season testing ground for F1 teams, away from the traditional stomping ground of Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya.
- The F1 2021 season to begin with the traditional Australian GP. This will be followed by races in Asia – Bahrain, China, and (finally) a debut for Vietnam.
- Barcelona to host its race in May, followed by the Monaco, Canadian, and Azerbaijan Grands Prix.
- The European leg will continue with races in France, Britain, Austria, and Hungary.
- A summer break will follow this, but the length of that is yet to be ascertained due to ambiguity over the number of races for the next half of the season.
- A couple of triple-headers have been planned: The first in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Italy; the second one in the United States, Mexico, and Brazil.
- Saudi Arabia is set to make its much-talked-about F1 debut, potentially forming a double-header with the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
F1 2021 looks set to have Saudi Arabia on the calendar. What a complete joke.
A money grabbing exercise yet again by @F1 mgmt.
Why does F1 need Bahrain, Abu Dhabi & Saudi Arabia. At least fans can travel to BAH & A.D.
Cant for Saudi most likely with their visa restrictions
— Rayzor (@IrishTomsyFan) October 27, 2020
The decision to host the race in Saudi Arabia is a contentious one, with the country accused of repeatedly violating human rights protocols. In spite of that, the oil-rich country has hosted the season-opener of Formula E for the last two seasons.