Colorado [USA], Mar 13 (ANI): Formula 1 on Friday announced that the Bahrain Grand Prix and the Vietnam Grand Prix will be postponed in a bid to contain the spread of coronavirus pandemic.
The Bahrain Grand Prix was scheduled to held from March 20-22 while Vietnam Grand Prix was slated to be held from April 3-5.
"Due to the continued global spread of COVID-19 and after ongoing discussions with the FIA, and race organisers a decision has been taken by all parties to postpone the Bahrain Grand Prix and the Vietnam Grand Prix due to take place on March 20-22 and April 3-5 respectively," Formula 1 tweeted.
Following the cancellation of the season-opening Australian Grand Prix and the postponement of the races in China, Bahrain and Vietnam, Formula 1 and governing body the FIA have said they now 'expect' the 2020 season to begin at the end of May - though this will be regularly reviewed.
A joint statement from Formula 1, the FIA, the race organisers, and the relevant governments involved, said: "Following the announcement of the Australian Grand Prix's cancellation this week and the ongoing and fluid nature of the COVID-19 situation globally, Formula 1, the FIA and the 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."
"As a result, Formula 1 and the FIA expect to begin the Championship in Europe at the end of May but given the sharp increase in COVID-19 cases in Europe in recent days, this will be regularly reviewed," it added.
The outbreak of COVID-19 forced the Chinese round of the calendar to be postponed last month. Then on Thursday, the opening race of the season in Melbourne was also called off, after a McLaren team member tested positive for the virus. (ANI)