Australian GP unlikely to open 2022 season

ยฉ XPB 

The Australian GP is unlikely to raise the curtain on the 2022 F1 season according to officials, but Melbourne could be assigned an April date.

Melbourne's Albert Park has traditionally opened F1's festivities since 1996, except in 2006 and 2010 when Bahrain held that privilege.

But the venue has been forced to compose with the health restrictions imposed by the global pandemic.

The race was cancelled at the eleventh hour in 2020, and then postponed at the start of this year and reassigned a late November date. But earlier this week, the event was scrapped once again due to Australia maintaining strict travel and quarantine restrictions for international travelers that will likely extend into November.

Victoria state Sports Minister Martin Pakula, whose jurisdiction has oversight over Melbourne, is hopeful of securing an April date from F.

"Weโ€™ve been talking April with F1 for some time," said Pakula.

"I think as you know this year other events went into that first and second race slot, and I think F1 is keen to continue with those events being the first and second race of the year.

"Weโ€™ve been looking at April for some period of time, itโ€™s not set in stone, weโ€™ll continue those discussions, but itโ€™s something thatโ€™s been in the work for a while."

Despite the disruptions that have impacted Australia's showcase motorsport event, Pakula said that Melbourne remains committed to its contract with F1 which runs until 2025.

"We have an agreement through 2025, weโ€™re very keen to extend it," he said.

"There arenโ€™t many circuits around the world which are as picturesque or as loved by drivers and teams as Albert Park.

"Weโ€™ll be working very close with Formula 1 to ensure Albert Park is the venue for many years into the future."

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