Well, don’t start counting the days of seeing an F1 race taking place soon as the FIA had just announced that the mandatory shutdown for all F1 teams has been extended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Last month, the FIA had opted to bring forward the F1’s traditional summer shutdown period to spring and extending it by seven days to three weeks. But with the situation not showing any signs of slowing down, the FIA and F1 teams had a conference call over the matter and everyone gave the unanimous approval to extend the shutdown period from 21 to 35 days.
What does the shutdown means?
Areas such as design, research and development, production and build must cease operations, and a recent rule change also covers the power unit manufacturers as well, as a move to cut costs. Teams can enforce their shutdown in March, April and/or May. Ferrari’s initial three-week period was due to end on April 8th, while Alfa Romeo’s first three weeks won’t end until April 13th.
The latest race to get postponed is the Canadian Grand Prix which was scheduled on June 14, but we are having doubts that it will run at all. The fate of the British Grand Prix, scheduled for July 19, will be decided at the end of this month. F1 hopes to get a 15-18 race season underway in the summer, but other plans such as extending the campaign into 2021 are also under consideration.