Qatar expected to host maiden F1 race in November
The Losail International Circuit in Qatar is reportedly set to replace Melbourne as a replacement venue on Formula 1’s 2021 calendar.
The cancellation of the Australian Grand Prix due to the Covid-19 pandemic has left F1’s schedule with a free slot in November. Formula 1 has been considering alternative venues, in both November and in October following the annulment of the Japanese Grand Prix at Suzuka, also due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In order to preserve F1’s 23-race agenda, a double-header at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin has reportedly been tabled as well as a return to Bahrain.
But according to multiple sources, Qatar has come to the forefront as a probable replacement venue for November
The peninsular Arab country has been on MotoGP’s map since 2004, while the Losail International Circuit, which holds an FIA Grade 1 licence, has also staged rounds of the World Superbike series as well as of the World Touring Car Championship.
The venue’s addition to the calendar in late November would concentrate Formula 1’s final leg in the Middle-East, with Jeddah in Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi hosting the final two rounds of the 2021 F1 season.
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After F1’s upcoming Spa-Zandvoort-Monza triple-header, teams are scheduled to head to Russia and then to Turkey. However, the latter is still currently on the UK’s red list – countries from where returning travelers need to quarantine for 10 days in a government hotel in the UK – a status that puts the event in Istanbul in jeopardy.
The same applies for Mexico and Brazil, the second and third rounds of F1’s leg on the American continent.
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