Next month’s Turkish Grand Prix is under threat after the UK government put Turkey on its red travel list. The race was added to the calendar last month after travel restrictions forced the cancellation of the Canadian GP. UK transport secretary Grant Schapps said on Friday that red-list countries “should not be visited except in the most extreme circumstances”.
Formula 1 said it was “assessing the situation and will provide more details in the coming days”. The race is scheduled to take place between 11 and 13 June. UK citizens returning from countries on the red list are required to quarantine at a government-approved hotel for 10 days. Seven of the 10 Formula 1 teams, along with personnel from FOM’s broadcast crew and other assorted personnel, are based in the UK. Personnel returning to the UK from events in 2021 have had to isolate at home for 10 days, with two mandatory tests during that period. Portugal was on the UK’s red list during the winter months and plans were drawn up for personnel to remain in Spain – to where they were always going to travel – beyond the 10-day cut-off, or head straight to Monaco, in order to avoid hotel quarantine. But such measures were avoided when Portugal was removed from the red list in mid-March.
Formula 1’s 2021 calendar has already undergone changes with Australia’s season-opener delayed from March to November and China’s planned April round indefinitely postponed. Formula 1 has not raced outside of Europe or the Middle East since the pandemic began in March 2020.