The organisers of the Formula One French Grand Prix have announced that the racing event has been cancelled for 2020, in wake of the Coronavirus pandemic. The Circuit Paul Ricard hosts the French GP and the decision to has been made following the French government's directive to ban all major events until at least the middle of July 2020. The French GP was scheduled to take place in June this year. The country has also extended its travel restrictions in order to contain the spread of the coronavirus. In light of the current situation, the organisers deemed fit to cancel the French GP for 2020.
Eric Boullier, Managing Director of the GIP Grand Prix de France - Le Castellet said, "Given the evolution of the situation linked to the spread of the Covid-19 virus, the French Grand Prix takes note of the decisions announced by the French State making it impossible to maintain our event. The eyes of the GIP Grand Prix de France - Le Castellet are already turning towards the summer of 2021 in order to offer our spectators an even more unprecedented event at the heart of the Région Sud."
Lewis Hamilton had won the French GP in 2019
Chase Carey, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Formula 1 said, " We have been in close contact with the French promoter during this evolving situation and while it is disappointing for our fans and the F1 community that the French Grand Prix will not take place we fully support the decision taken by the French authorities in France and look forward to being back at Paul Ricard soon."
The French GP becomes the 10th race to have been postponed or cancelled this year due to the pandemic. The Australian GP, Monaco GP, Bahrain GP, Azerbaijan GP among others have already been cancelled. It was expected that the French GP could kick things off for F1's as the organisers try to salvage the remaining season of the sport. However, with the French GP cancelled, F1 is likely to only begin with the Austria GP on July 5, 2020. Meanwhile, the Silverstone GP has been confirmed to take place behind closed doors by the circuit organisers, if the current the season does lift off ground this year.