OCTOBER 1, 2020

FIA admits F1 will not be covid-free in 2021

The FIA's operations director does not think Formula 1 will be covid-free in 2021.

Esteban Ocon, Russian GP 2020
© Renault

The FIA's operations director does not think Formula 1 will be covid-free in 2021.

Among Bruno Famin's chief responsibilities this year is to oversee the health protocol that is allowing the racing to go ahead in 2020 amid the coronavirus crisis.

"Do you say 'knock on wood' in Spain?" he told the Spanish newspaper AS.

"We have had some difficult situations so far, but we have managed them without directly disrupting our operations.

"Zero risk does not exist so there may be problems in the last races - we must remain vigilant," Famin added.

Indeed, covid infections continue apace around the world, casting doubt on whether some scheduled races in 2020 may be cancelled, and whether a 'normal' 2021 calendar will be possible.

"There is a debate in most countries about whether or not to celebrate events of this type," Famin acknowledged.

"For now, what we have is a protocol that works and is proven, so there is currently no reason not to follow the schedule we have planned."

A return to normality in 2021 is another question.

"It will be difficult too, although we don't know exactly how difficult yet," admitted Famin.

"The virus will still be with us and everywhere. Until we have an efficient vaccine for everyone, we will have problems," he said.

"The tests may improve, and so may the treatments. Things should improve next year, or we all hope so, but we are all convinced that it will be another year with coronavirus."

As for whether that means Liberty Media will organise a full and 'normal' calendar of European as well as overseas races, Famin is not sure.

"I have no doubt that FOM is working on it, but there are still many questions," he said. "It is too early to tell.

"Many people hope that in the second part of the year the situation will improve, but the only thing we know - sadly - is that the virus will continue."