The first race of the Formula One 2020 Season, the Australian Grand Prix has been cancelled. The news came after McLaren withdrew from the race on Thursday, after one of their team members tested positive for the Coronavirus.
A statement issued jointly by F1, Governing Body FIA and the Australian Grand Prix Corporation stated, “Following the confirmation that a member of the McLaren Racing Team has tested positive for COVID-19 and the team’s decision to withdraw from the Australian Grand Prix, Formula 1 and the FIA convened a meeting of the other nine team principals on Thursday evening. Those discussions concluded with a majority view of the teams that the race should not go ahead. Formula 1 and the FIA, with the full support of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation (AGPC) have therefore taken the decision that all Formula 1 activity for the Australian Grand Prix are cancelled. We appreciate this is very disappointing news for the thousands of fans due to attend the race and all ticket holders will receive a full refund and a further announcement will be communicated in due course. All parties took into consideration the huge efforts of the AGPC, Motorsport Australia, staff and volunteers to stage the opening round of the 2020 FIA Formula One World Championship in Melbourne, however concluded that the safety of all members of the Formula 1 family and the wider community, as well as the fairness of the competition take priority.”
Aussi driver for Renault, Daniel Ricciardo was awaiting a good run at his home ground this Season.
Australian drivers haven’t always had the best of luck on home soil – in fact, famously no Australian has ever finished on the podium in his home race. Daniel Ricciardo came closest of all, actually standing on the podium in 2014 before being disqualified for a technical issue, and looking back at his record in Melbourne the Renault driver reckons he’s due another good result at Albert Park this year.
He’d be disappointed today but we wish him luck in all the other upcoming races!