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Formula 1

F1 adds races at Mugello and Sochi to 2020 calendar

by Matt Beer
2 min read

Formula 1 will race at Mugello for the first time, and hold its Russian Grand Prix after all, as the 2020 calendar nears completion.

Ferrari-owned Mugello will complete a third European triple-header on September 13, following one week from the Italian Grand Prix at Monza.

It will be called the Tuscany Ferrari 1000 Grand Prix, honouring the region and the fact it will be Ferrari’s 1000th F1 race.

Ferrari called it an “incredible opportunity” and praised F1 CEO Chase Carey, “who knows and appreciates the value that our team represents for this sport, to the extent that he was prepared to recognise this anniversary in the official name of the event”.

“To think that today we are about to have an event like a grand prix there – and the thousandth in our Formula 1 history no less – is a wonderful feeling,” said Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto.

“I can’t wait for that dream to come true on September 13.”

One week’s break will follow Mugello’s grand prix debut then F1 has confirmed its Sochi race will go ahead on September 27.

Carey says the Russian GP is a “major moment in our season”, which could be a reference to it being the first race that allows fans to attend – the event has started selling tickets again on its website.

“Both races will be a huge boost for fans with more announcements on the next races in our calendar coming in the weeks ahead,” said Carey.

The Race understands that, subject to the conclusion of advanced negotiations, the Russian race is set to be followed by the Algarve circuit that, like Mugello, has hosted F1 testing but never racing.

However, the lack of an announcement for the Canadian Grand Prix suggests falling into October has hurt Montreal’s prospects, but it is understood talks are ongoing.

Montreal organisers were keen to have its postponed race by September, to avoid coinciding with the start of a harsh winter.

But a race in early October may still be achievable.

It appears likely the coronavirus-impacted 2020 F1 season will cut out the rest of the Americas, due to the COVID-19 situation in the USA, Mexico and Brazil.

That could mean the calendar consists of a lengthy European leg, Canada, a reduced Asian presence, and a final run of races in the Middle-East.

Talks are ongoing to hold the Chinese Grand Prix, despite a declaration from the country’s General Administration of Sports that it will not hold any international sports for the rest of this year.

An October date could be possible if China, where the COVID-19 outbreak originated, permits select major events to take place.

The inaugural Vietnam Grand Prix has also re-emerged as a serious candidate, having initially appeared unlikely due to the proximity of a late-season reason to its expected April 2021 date.

As has been the case for some time, F1 is confident of holding two races in Bahrain to bolster the schedule as necessary, and end in Abu Dhabi in mid-December.

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