Start, Singapore, 2019

Singapore Grand Prix won’t be held behind closed doors

RaceFans Round-up

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In the round-up: The Singapore Grand Prix organisers say the race will only go ahead if spectators can attend.

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Comment of the day

Should the late Anthoine Hubert’s likeness be included in F1 2020 as a driver you can enter in this year’s F1 season?

If his family is happy with it, then I like it.

In the career mode we are just creating a theoretical future, and if he is there then it’s better than what actually happened. Prost can’t join the F1 grid in career mode because 10 months ago it was never going to happen (at 64 years old), but there was a possibility Antoine would.

I’m still picking Raghunathan though, on the basis that if the adage is right, your biggest opponent is your teammate.

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Ponzonha and Tenerifeman!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is via the contact form or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

  • 40 years ago today Didier Pironi put his Ligier on pole position for the Monaco Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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36 comments on “Singapore Grand Prix won’t be held behind closed doors”

  1. Happy birthday to Ponzonha and Tenerifeman!

    Reading this in rural Colombia ….. my first thought , he’s got it wrong, it’s tomorrow! Of course you’re already into tomorrow. Senior moment!

    1. Tiko (@tikobellsouth-net)
      17th May 2020, 3:35

      Happy Birthday Tenerifeman! Feliz Cumpleaños! Cheers!

    2. this is not facebook

    3. @tenerifeman happy birthday!

  2. Races on street circuits were never going to be an option until this virus is well and truly beaten. If we are fortunate we’ll get two races in Austria, two at Silverstone, two in Hungary and two at Hockenheim. That totals eight…enough to qualify as a Championship. Any more will be a bonus….maybe Imola but the Italian virus figures are still a great worry! Portimao and COTA would also be great. The major problem that i see with a shortened championship is that there will be no time for teams that take a while to ramp up their development/ performances. The hot shots straight out of the box will walk it. Am just keeping everything crossed that we don’t see a second virus wave as that would be devastating. Roll on Austria.

    1. Maybe go back to both venues in Germany along with Dutch GP, and French GP as well being held behind closed doors. That increases the count to 12 races.

      1. I believe the Dutch GP has said it doesn’t want to host a race without fans.

        1. But I did see mention somewhere (German media?) that Hockenheim might be holding two races @spafrancorchamps – I guess it might help them keep the track in the picture (and it’s owned by the local government – I would guess costs would have to be largely payed by FIA though).

          In a way it makes sense to not hold tracks where the contract has to be suspended/re-negotiated or amended, but rather make one-time 2020/COVID-19 deals with tracks that can hold F1 races, but do not have a current contract so they can get to TV-money #races; the races keep a bit of hope of something for the future, and FOM does not have to risk years-long contract-law arbitrations and court cases.

          As for street tracks, given the cost of building those, I have to agree, as long as there’s no audience, it will be only a burden to most localities, with most of the cost and effort but hardly any of the benefit. For purpose built tracks, well they are like unused property when not raced upon, so depending on the situation, using them (‘anti-squatter’ races?!) might in some cases make sense.

    2. As said above, no reason the Dutch GP can’t be held in August (better time of year than May anyway), Paul Ricard has a airstrip next to it so would be a logical choice, Jerez is remote and near an airport.

      Have qualifying in the morning and race in the afternoon for Saturday and Sunday.

      1. Is that strip long enough for freight?

    3. @kenji – No, that wouldn’t be enough to qualify for the WC as those circuits are all in Europe, and there’s also a minimum requirement for the number of continents, which is three.
      @Chaitanya – French GP is already out of the question for this year and Hockenheim (based on recent developments on the altered race calendar for this year) would only come in as a replacement for Silverstone.

      1. Has French govt. tightned restrictions?

    4. Re Imola, the UK virus figures are worse than Italy’s so if they decide Silverstone is ok, why not Imola.

      1. Cos the Italian government are marginally more sensible than the British government

      2. @hugh11 I wouldn’t say that it is necessarily that easy, as it depends whether you are looking at it in terms of total cases or cases per head of population. There is likely to be a population size factor, given the UK has a larger population than Italy, along with an age distribution factor (Italy having a higher proportion of elderly people).

        If you take those into account, it’s less clear cut – the UK might have more cases in total (237,000 versus 224,00 confirmed infections), but fewer cases as an overall proportion of the population (about 3,500 per 1 million citizens in the UK, versus about 3,700 per 1 million citizens in Italy). There is an indication that the UK and Italy do also have some differences in the way in which they classify infections that occur outside of hospital, so there is some debate over whether the figures are directly comparable.

        The figures are still not great, but it is worth noting that both Italy and the UK are also not the worst hit countries in Europe if you look per head of population – Spain is significantly worse, at about 5,900 cases per 1 million citizens, with Belgium and Ireland (about 4,900 and 4,800 per 1 million citizens respectively) also worse in that respect. As an aside, the United States also stands out as having a fairly high number of cases per head of population too (4,600 per 1 million citizens).

  3. So even more likely now that the Singapore GP isn’t going to go ahead. I don’t really see how any potential F1-race this year (permanent or temporary circuit) could take place with spectators in attendance, and especially on a city track any more than on a more isolated one like Red Bull Ring.

  4. Why would Renault go anywhere near Alonso? Do they need a corrosive pay-driver spreading racism around?

    1. Racism?????

      1. Yes. Don’t pretend it’s something new.

        1. Dave, I really would advise coming up with substantial evidence of such a claim, because throwing around comments like that without any evidence could be considered highly defamatory and get this site into significant legal trouble.

        2. Racism, not new?????????

        3. Please provide some evidence please

          1. I think he’s referring to the stick Lewis got at testing in Barcelona from Alonzo ‘fans’ which did include racist remarks. I don’t think there’s any evidence that Fernando directly did anything though I think he approved of fans giving Lewis a hard time, I certainly don’t think he was promoting that particular part of it.

    2. He associated himself with the criminal Briatore tainting his career

    3. I don’t know if Renault needs Alonso but I do know that the internet doesn’t need another corrosive user spreading their vile thoughts around and making horrible accusations with no foundations behind them about people they have probably never met.

      1. I agree Rob. There is no evidence of this. I suggest the comment be deleted by those in charge.

        1. … by those in charge


    4. Considering how much some people hate him, he must be good.

  5. Why is it bad if vettel moves to a midfield team? If he wants to keep driving, without the pressure of a big team, why shouldn’t he? If it makes him happy, I say go for it. It’s not about the money…

    Besides, I’d take a Vettel in the midfield than a Grosjean or a Magnussen…

    1. Yeah look at Kimi, he has lots of fun in AR.

    2. Has Vettel actually said anything since the announcement?
      I get the feeling that he’s probably had enough and decided there are more important things in life.

  6. If Renault think that getting Alonso will make a difference (we’ll it will to their bank balance) then they truly are living in a long gone era when. Good driver could eke out a win in a pretty average car.

    It’s about time they stopped deluding themselves and actually invest some time and money into improving their overall package. Their chassis is average at best and even now, or at least in 2019, they still don’t seem to have gotten consistently on top of reliability issues with their abomination of a PU.

    Just hoping that the budget cap will come down far enough to completely nobble the big 3 isn’t really a “strategy”. They need a comprehensive improvement in every aspect of the car, but appear to have no real plans to do so – signing Alonso would just deflect from that.

    1. GtisBetter (@)
      17th May 2020, 10:10

      i don’t think they can invest more. It’s has been shpw that f1 participation doesn’t result into more cars sold and they have to carry Nissan which is istruggeling. I wouldn’t be surprised if they will pull out soon.

  7. First of all I need to say I have never had a problem with Alonso as a driver. I guess for Renault the advantage of having him is that it would gain them good publicity and good input into developing the car. Alonso would likely be a competitive driver and I doubt they would have to pay him all that much because I think his salary demands would be reasonable at this stage of his career.

    It does seem a very short term solution though. Surely he’s never going to race for more than a couple of years. Wouldn’t they be better off in investing in someone younger? Then there is his personality. He does seem to become quite critical and dissatisfied if things don’t live up to his expectations. He must be a difficult character to handle.

    If Renault are not yet decided on their long term commitment then employing Alonso for a couple of years might be fine. Overall though I am not sure bringing back Alonso is worth it.

    1. “Good publicity” ? How much of that did McLaren & Honda receive when Alonso was moaning about their F2 car. In fact, how much good publicity did they receive at any time when he was driving for them? He didn’t do much development for them either.

      Alonso is all about himself. Renault should save their money and put it into the car.

  8. Alonso, Alonso, yes Alonso. As a person he is easy to dislike. As a driver he is the most exciting. I am looking so forward to F1 with Alonso, the man who fights for every meter all the time, we are lucky to witness his immense talent.

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