F1: British Grand Prix to be held without fans

LONDON (Agencies): The British Grand Prix will take place behind closed doors given the challenges caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, it was announced Monday.

“We have left this difficult decision for as long as possible, but it is abundantly clear given the current conditions in the country and the government requirements in place now and for the foreseeable future, that a Grand Prix under normal conditions is just not going to be possible,” Silverstone chief Stuart Pringle said on formula1.com.

The F1 management is working on a revised calendar for 2020 after cancellations and postponements due to the pandemic that has claimed over 200,000 lives worldwide.

Meanwhile, earlier in the day, the French Grand Prix got canceled due to the French government’s decision to ban all major events until at least mid-July.

The United Kingdom has registered nearly 21,000 virus-linked deaths so far, along with 154,000-plus infections and 780 recoveries.

While many countries are announcing plans to ease virus lockdowns, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson says the UK is at point of “maximum risk” and he won’t ease restrictions too quickly.

F1: French Grand Prix canceled

due to pandemic

PARIS The French Grand Prix, which was scheduled for end of June, was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, Formula 1 announced Monday.

“The decision of the French government to ban all major events until at least the middle of July, coupled with the travel restrictions in place to help contain the spread of coronavirus, meant it will be impossible for the Grand Prix to go ahead as planned,” it said in a statement on its website.

It becomes the 10th race of the 2020 season to have either been canceled or postponed because of the COVID-19 outbreak, which has claimed over 200,000 lives in 185 countries.

The death toll in France has risen to 22,890 along with 162,220 infections and 45,683 recoveries, according to Johns Hopkins University.

The country has been under a lockdown since March 17. Prime Minister Edouard Philippe is set to announce this week a national strategy to ease the virus restrictions from May 11.

The priorities identified include reopening of schools and workplaces, getting public transport back to normal, testing policy and support for the elderly.