Brown says F1 closely 'monitoring' situation in Vietnam

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McLaren boss Zak Brown says Formula 1 teams are 'monitoring' the health situation in Vietnam where several cases of the Chinese coronavirus have been detected.

F1 is due to race for the very first time in the South Asian country on April 4, with Hanoi hosting the fourth round of the F1 world championship.

However, news has emerged that the coronavirus has crossed the Chinese border and found its way into Vietnam, where several villages near Hanoi - totaling 10,000 people - have been put under lock down by the local authorities.

The development has now put Vietnam in focus as an event under potential risk. Speaking at the launch of McLaren's 2020 season in Woking on Thursday, Brown said that he would not force any team personnel to travel to Hanoi.

"Vietnam has not been raised yet as a potential issue," said the McLaren boss. "But obviously it is very nearby (to China) so we are going to monitor the situation.

"We would never do anything that puts our people at risk, and I don’t believe Formula 1 would as well."


An effective cancellation of the Vietnam Grand Prix, coupled with China's scrapping, would leave a massive seven-week break in the F1 calendar between Bahrain on March 22 and the Dutch Grand Prix scheduled for May 3.

"This is a new situation for all of us, we are all in the same situation and it is unforeseen and unheard of," Brown added.

"I know some races have been cancelled in the past but not necessarily what we are facing here. I think we will just have to react when we know more, and it will be the same for everyone.

"First and foremost it is a terrible situation for the world and I hope it gets resolved. Other things, such as sport, doesn’t matter when it comes to things like this.

"Hopefully it will get resolved and we will respond accordingly.

"If there is a month off, then there's a month off. Maybe Chase [Carey] might look for new races to fill that gap but I think that it is a very fluid situation."

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