The Chinese Grand Prix is canceled due to the zero-Covid policy. Replacement not known.
Formula 1 is making a change to the racing calendar for the 2023 season. As announced on Friday at 12 noon, the Chinese Grand Prix will not take place next year either. This shrinks the record calendar of the premier class to 23 races in the coming season.
The Formula 1 race in Shanghai has been a big question mark since the calendar was announced. Because the strict anti-corona policy of the government in Beijing, which prescribes strict lockdowns even for small sources of infection and does not provide for any exceptions for quarantine, made long-term planning of a Formula 1 GP difficult.
Formula 1 calendar: Which GP replaces China?
Reports have been increasing for weeks that the cancellation of the Grand Prix, which was held for the last time in 2019, is only a matter of time. Reports that have now been confirmed. Formula 1 announced in a press release that the cancellation came about after discussions with the promoter and the responsible authorities.
This leaves a gap of four weeks in the Formula 1 calendar for 2023 between the Australian Grand Prix on April 2nd and the Azerbaijan GP scheduled for April 30th. How and if this gap will be filled is not yet known. According to several media reports in recent weeks, a postponement of the F1 race in Baku is also in the offing.
However, this gap may also be filled by replacement races. For a long time, a deletion without replacement was considered the most likely option. But Formula 1 announced in the course of the cancellation that it would examine alternatives to the Grand Prix in Shanghai. “Formula 1 is currently evaluating alternative options to replace the spot on the 2023 calendar and will provide an update on this in due course,” the statement said. It is not yet clear how soon a possible replacement will be announced. However, an announcement before the end of this year seems unlikely.
F1 2023, record calendar remains intact
Even with the cancellation of China, more races are planned in the 2023 Formula 1 season than ever before in the premier class. With the debut of the city circuit in downtown Las Vegas and a comeback at the Losail International Circuit in Qatar, at least 23 Grands Prix remain on the agenda.
The Chinese Grand Prix fell victim to the corona pandemic in 2020 and 2021. In the last race on the 5.451-kilometer Shanghai International Circuit 2019, Lewis Hamilton triumphed in front of his then Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas. China has been on the premier class calendar since 2004, and since then the layout of the circuit, which is located in the suburbs of the East Asian coastal city, has remained unchanged.