Formula One have announced three new additions to its 2020 calendar – but have also confirmed that grands prix in Brazil, USA, Mexico and Canada will not take place this year.
Germany’s Nurburgring and Imola in Italy will make a return to the calendar, while Portugal’s Portimao track will make its F1 debut to take the current schedule up to 13 events.
Nurburgring will host Lewis Hamilton and Co for the first time since 2013 when the GP takes place on October 11 before the F1 circus heads to Portimao for its first ever GP a fortnight later.
Imola, the San Marino venue which was the scene of three-time world champion’s Ayrton Senna’s tragic death in 1994, was last on the calendar in 2006 and is pencilled in for a November 1 showdown.
But as a result of the coronavirus situation in the Americas, F1 bosses have been forced to accept that four popular events in Sao Paulo, Austin, Mexico City and Montreal will not take place this season.
Chase Carey, Chairman and CEO of Formula 1, said: “We are pleased that we continue to make strong progress in finalising our plans for the 2020 season and are excited to welcome Nurburgring, Portimao and Imola to the revised calendar.
“We want to thank the promoters, the teams, and the FIA for their full support in our efforts to bring our fans exciting racing this season during an unprecedented time.
“We also want to pay tribute to our incredible partners in the Americas and look forward to being back with them next season when they will once again be able to thrill millions of fans around the world.”
The cancellations take the tally of races axed from the original 2020 calendar to 11. The other casualties of Covid-19 are Australia, France, Monaco, the Netherlands, Azerbaijan, Singapore and Japan.
Despite losing four more races, there remains hope a maiden race in Vietnam’s capital Hanoi can be arranged for mid-November.
The revised schedule now has 13 rounds, with F1 aiming for a reduced championship of between 15 and 18 with final races in Bahrain and Abu Dhabi in mid-December.
Next up for F1 is two races at Silverstone, with Lewis Hamilton heading to the British Grand Prix a week on Sunday with a five-point title lead over Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas.