The new formula 1 season has been considerably shaken up by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The next development sees the summer break, previously observed in August, moved to March and April.
The decision to make this move was unanimous, with teams choosing a three-week period to close in that time. The season will then have to run for as long as required once races are cleared to begin again.
The reasoning behind the move is understandable enough. It was made so as to accommodate as many races holding consecutively once the season begins.
More changes and decisions are expected to be made in the coming weeks, and both teams and managers are currently examining their options, considering the situation that may arise with reshaping the calendar, and a reduced number of races from the previously scheduled number.
The opening races in Australian, Bahrain, Vietnam, and China, have all been postponed. The fate of the next ones in the Netherlands, Spain, and in Monaco are expected to be decided soon, but experts are certain the logical decision would be to postponed those races too.
Various teams have already expressed their shutdown dates, with Ferrari announcing that the team started shutdown on March 19, and will extend for three weeks. Red Bull is expected to start its shutdown on March 27, and will operate with major flexibility around their dates, thanks to the relatively unstable nature of the pandemic.
Most teams have also expressed support with the decision made by the World Motor Sport Council. They not only agreed that the measures were important, they also expressed readiness to follow guidelines laid down by the government and medical professionals in tackling the virus spread, and making sure that it is dealt with in the most optimal and effective way possible.
F1 bosses are reported to be the process of implementing a plan that would see the season begin with the Azerbaijan Grand prix on June 7. Reports also state that this date is by no means set in stone, and is largely dependent on the development of the virus.
Should the number of races expected to take place in the season be cut short, a number of races have been predicted to be the ones to give way. These races include the ones in Monaco, China, Australia, Brazil, and Spain.
Teams are also reported to be working on securing unanimous agreement regarding implementing a plan that will delay the regulation changes previously scheduled for next season, to be held until 2022. Nine of the teams are said to have already come to an agreement, with the only exception being Ferrari, who have asked to be given more time to make its decision.
The revenue losses expected to be endured by all teams is said to be one of the reasons the teams chose to follow this path. Final decision is expected to be made soon.