The Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix and MotoGP races have been canceled for the second successive year due to the country’s strict coronavirus measures, organizers announced Tuesday.
The race had initially been postponed from its original season-opening spot on the F1 calendar on March 21 and had been rescheduled for Nov. 21.
"We regret to announce that the 2021 Australian Grand Prix has been canceled due to restrictions and logistical challenges relating to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic," organizers said in a statement.
The Australian round of the MotoGP world championship, scheduled for Phillip Island on Oct. 24, was also canceled.
"The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and resulting travel complications and logistical restrictions mean it has not been possible to confirm the viability of the event at this time, and it will therefore not feature on the 2021 calendar," organizers said.
The Australian Grand Prix Corporation presented a COVID-19-safe plan to the Australian government, arguing the event could be run safely with the drivers and crews operating within a biosecure bubble.
F1 already has a race scheduled in Sao Paulo, Brazil for Nov. 7, which left little time for a potential two-week hotel quarantine before the November race.
F1 chief Stefano Domenicali said he remained confident a 23-race season would still be possible despite the cancellation of the Australian Grand Prix.
"While it is disappointing we won't be racing in Australia this season, we are confident we can deliver a 23-race season in 2021 and we have a number of options to take forward," he said in a statement.
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