Spanish GP at Catalunya to take place behind closed doors

Spanish GP at Catalunya to take place behind closed doors

The Spanish GP at Barcelona will once again take place without fans in the grandstands as Catalunya extends its COVID-19 restrictions.

The event’s promoter had opened its box office to ticket sales for the fourth round of the 2021 F1 world championship that will take place on May 9, hoping to host a limited number of race fans.

But Catalan health authorities, who recently extended a series of COVID-19 restrictions until April 26, including closing its borders, have informed the Circuit de Catalunya that it will not be able to open its gates to the public next month given the current uncertainty surrounding the area’s sanitary situation.

“PROCICAT (the Catalan Civil Protection Office) has notified Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, that the Grand Prix cannot be staged under the conditions defined in the Spectator Access Protocol,” the circuit said in a statement published on Saturday.

“Under these conditions, it is impossible to establish with absolute certainty whether or not the epidemic and welfare situation on 7, 8 and 9 May will allow for a further relaxation of the measures that do also restrict mobility at county level, which consequently would hinder fans from outside the Valles Oriental region from coming to the racetrack.

“Moreover, following the communication of the Departments of the Interior and Health of the Catalan Government, neither the epidemiological situation, nor, especially, the situation in hospitals allow expecting right now a review of the current measures or a relevant liberalisation, considering that the dates of the Grand Prix are quite close.

“Given this situation, the circuit management has proceeded to notify Formula One Management Limited that the Formula 1 Aramco Gran Premio De Espana 2021 will have to be staged without spectator attendance.”

Spanish GP organisers have said that they will refund all tickets holders for the May 9 event.

So far, there has been no indication that any upcoming venue will open its gates to spectators. Silverstone is pushing for a vaccine passport to be issued to fans to allow for a near full crowd for next summer’s British GP.

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