The street circuit of Baku has been a constant in the Formula 1 championship since 2016 holding the European GP. Now, with the event that represents the Azerbaijan Grand Prix and due to the race being ruled out in 2020 for the Coronavirus pandemic, the country will still have a presence in the calendar, now until 2024 at least, confirmed to BCC Executive Director, Arif Rahimov.
“It’s important for us as a country to show that we’re kind of en route of getting done with COVID and bringing the country out of this pandemic.”
“I think different countries are trying to this and trying to show to the world with different events and different things they do. For us in Baku, and Azerbaijan, it was very important to show it with the events we have planned, we’re doing them.”
“Obviously we are not doing them as they were prior to Covid but we’re still doing them, and we’ll get there next year’ I hope it will be a full-on event with the spectators and with the concerts etc.”
“I think that’s the right message to send to the world that we’re organized, we’re are fighting this season, and we’re en route of going back to normal.”
After Formula 1 announced officially that Canada will not take part in this year’s calendar, the organization moved on quickly and put Istanbul on date for the 7th event of the year set to be hold on June 13th.
BREAKING: Turkey joins 2021 calendar in place of Canada on June 11-13— Formula 1 (@F1) April 28, 2021
We are looking forward to the return of the Canadian Grand Prix in 2022, which has also signed a two-year contract extension#TurkishGP 🇹🇷 #F1 pic.twitter.com/x3R8taLOci
Now, three weeks after the Turkish announcement, rumors had been flying around that owing to the country being placed on the United Kingdom’s red list, the race in Istanbul will possibly be canceled too due to the fact that anyone returning to the United Kingdom would have to carry out 10-day quarantine in a government-approved hotel.
This led to suppositions starting to guess a possible change within dates for Turkey and Azerbaijan, but the latest government has ruled out any possibility of this happening due to the country being set to host five Euro 2020 matches starting on June 12th.
“There were talks, but in our case, firstly our race weekend is really fixed, it was kind of squeezed in between all the other events in the city,” he said.
“Football is still going ahead, and the first game is on Saturday 12th, so there’s not much we can do, we’re not very flexible this year.
“I guess if it was any other year, when we are the only major event on Baku’s calendar that [a swap] could have been an option, but not this year.”