Uncertainty surrounds the fate of this year’s Formula 1 Canadian Grand Prix as health officials report that the event is set to be cancelled.
Radio Canada reports that health authorities have asked for the race to be cancelled. Meanwhile state officials, who fund the event, is pushing for the race to be held behind closed doors.
The disagreement between the two could see the race called off.
The concern is that visiting teams and F1 personal will mix with local circuit staff and volunteers, most of who are not vaccinated.
Given that the race is scheduled to go ahead the weekend after the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, teams will not be able to quarantine before the Canadian race, bypassing the mandatory 14-day isolation period for arrivals.
F1 has also reportedly asked event organisers for $6 million compensation if the race must go ahead without fans.
However, F1 is refusing to confirm that the race has been cancelled. Instead, they continue to insist that they are engaged in discussion with promoters.
“We are continuing our discussions with the promoter in Canada and have no further comment,” a statement read.
“What Radio Canada is referring to is a document of recommendations from public health. We as an organisation have not had confirmation from our public health officials and won’t comment until we get an official confirmation.”
Quebec director of public health of Dr Horacio Arruda says all options are on the table for the race to go ahead. Though running it without fans seems the most likely preference.
“As for holding the event behind closed doors, there is a way to do it with well advised protocols in terms of public health,” he said.
“As for the virus importation by people who come from outside without quarantine, there are ongoing discussions between Quebec and Canada.”
Istanbul Park has been mooted as the likely alternative venue should the Canadian race be cancelled.
The Canadian Grand Prix was cancelled last year amid complications with Covid-19 and travel.