Turkish GP dropped due to travel restrictions, Austria to get back-to-back races instead

The race in Istanbul was added in late April to replace the Canadian GP; The French GP date has also been changed

By Yuri Coghe
Austria has held back-to-back races in 2020 as well, opening the season with a doubleheader (Photo: F1.com)

F1 has announced more changes to the 2021 race calendar on Friday.

Travel restrictions caused by a spike in COVID-19 cases in Turkey meant the Grand Prix scheduled for Istanbul on the June 13 weekend has been cancelled. Instead, a second race in Austria has been added, with the back-to-back events set for the June 25-27 (Styrian GP) and July 2-4 (Austrian GP) weekends.

As a result, the French Grand Prix will now happen on the June 18-20 weekend, a week before initially planned. The new calendar changes keep the record number of 23 races for the season.

The Turkish Grand Prix wasn’t part of the 2021 calendar when it was first announced. The race was added later to replace the Canadian Grand Prix, cancelled in late April.

In 2020, the Red Bull Ring in Austria held back-to-back races to open the season. Valtteri Bottas won the Austrian Grand Prix on July 5 as Lewis Hamilton claimed the victory a week later in the Styrian Grand Prix.

“We were all looking forward to racing in Turkey but the travel restrictions in place have meant we are not able to be there in June,” said Stefano Domenicali, President and CEO of Formula 1, in a statement.

“Formula 1 has shown again that it is able to react quickly to developments and find solutions and we are delighted that we will have a doubleheader in Austria meaning our season remains at 23 races.”

Check the updated 2021 season calendar below

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