F1 chiefs give ‘green light’ to Portimão to host Portuguese GP in May

Formula 1 chiefs have reportedly given the go ahead for the Portuguese GP to be held on May 2 at the Algarve International Racetrack (AIA) in Portimão, filling the vacant spot in this season’s calendar.

So says motorsport.com, a website specialising in motor racing news, which adds that teams are due to be informed of the decision on Thursday (February 11).

“Following some weeks of uncertainty about the make-up of the opening rounds of the 2021 schedule, the difficult coronavirus situation in Portugal had prompted doubts about whether or not the race could secure a slot on the schedule,” reports the website.

It adds: “But following talks between F1 and race organisers over recent days to get a better understanding of the situation in the country, it is understood that both parties are happy that the event can go ahead.”

The website does stress, however, that the decision is “not without its complications” because of the new quarantine restrictions in the UK.

As it explains, Portugal is currently on the UK’s ‘red list’ of countries where anyone returning from must quarantine in a hotel for 10 days.

“With it understood that no exemption on the ‘red list’ matter is being granted for elite sports, it means UK-based F1 team personnel will be unable to return home from Portugal before the Spanish Grand Prix on May 9,” says motorsport.com.

However, it stresses that “the back-to-back nature of the Portuguese and Spanish rounds made it unlikely that many staff would have returned home anyway”.

No mention has been made about whether the race will go ahead in front of spectators.

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