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|The organisers of the Vietnam F1 Grand Prix officially called off the race to safeguard fans and sportspeople from COVID-19|
This decision was reached by Vietnam Grand Prix Corporation (VGPC) after discussions with F1 copyright and license holder Formula 1, the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA), Hanoi People's Committee, and the Vietnamese Motorsports Association (VMA).
At the time, preparations for Hanoi to join the world's most prestigious sporting event were rounding the final corners, with the world-class Hanoi F1 Circuit having been finished and ready to welcome the first-ever F1 race in the country that was supposed to take place on April 3-5.
The decision to call off the Vietnam F1 Grand Prix comes along with similar shots made by the Bahrain Grand Prix, following the cancellation of this weekend’s season-opener Australian Grand Prix, and the previous postponement of the Chinese Grand Prix, due to be held on April 17-19.
The very fluid and unpredictable COVID-19 epidemic, which has recently been declared as a global pandemic by the WHO, has been a subject of extensive consideration by organisers and relevant authorities whose first concern is people's health and safety.
"We are taking this decision to ensure the safety of everyone involved in Formula 1 and our fans," said Formula 1 chairman and CEO Chase Carey.
"The Bahrain Grand Prix is an exciting race in our schedule, and we look forward to being back there as soon as we can. We are also looking forward to Vietnam’s inaugural race and bringing the spectacle of F1 to one of the most exciting cities in the world,” he added.
Failing to hit the circuit in March, the 2020 F1 championship is expected to begin in Europe at the end of May – but this will be regularly reviewed.