Dutch Grand Prix postponed: F1 race could take place later in 2020

Max Verstappen in a F1 car at Zandvoort
Formula 1 driver Max Verstappen enters a turn at the Zandvoort racetrack during Jumbo Racing Days. May 19, 2019Photo: Mauvries / DepositPhotos

The much anticipated Dutch Grand Prix, a race scheduled for May on the 2020 Formula 1 calendar, was postponed on Thursday along with the season's other races that month in Spain and Monaco. The decision was made as the number of coronavirus cases in the Netherlands continued to rise, and stricter government regulations domestically were followed by even more severe travel restrictions to the Schengen Area as a whole.

The race was to be held at the Zandvoort circuit from May 1-3. It is yet another high profile event in the Netherlands altered because of the global health crisis after this week's announcements that neither the Eurovision Song Contest nor the national King's Day celebration would take place as planned.

"Due to the ongoing and fluid nature of the COVID-19 situation globally, Formula 1, the FIA and the three promoters have taken these decisions in order to ensure the health and safety of the travelling staff, championship participants and fans, which remains our primary concern," the Formula 1 organization said. No new date has been announced for the Dutch Grand Prix, the first F1 race in the Netherlands since 1985.

Officials were hopeful the event could take place later in the year.

"We cannot provide specific answers today given the fluidity of the situation. However, we plan to get the 2020 Championship season underway as soon as it’s safe to do so," said Formula 1 CEO Chase Carey in a letter to racing fans. "We are engaging with experts and officials on a daily basis as we evaluate how we go forward in the next few months."