Portimao confirmed, Baku GP set to follow two-day Imola format

Star InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar InactiveStar Inactive

Formula 1 has confirmed the Portuguese Grand Prix will be third round of the 2021 season, taking place on May 3.

At a video meeting of the F1 Commission last month, Portimao, which held the country's first race since 1996 last year, was confirmed as the preferred choice to fill the empty spot on the calendar.

And on Friday, it was announced the final agreement was in place to take the sport back to the popular venue on the Algarve.

“We are thrilled to announce that Formula 1 will be racing again in Portimao after the huge success of the race last year,” said F1 chief Stefano Domenicali in a statement.

Also Read:

“We want to thank the promoter and the Portuguese Government for their hard work and dedication in getting us to this point.

"We are confident and excited about our 2021 season, having shown last year that we could deliver 17 races safely and bring our millions of fans thrilling racing at a difficult time. We hope to welcome fans to Portimao again this season in a safe way and are working with the promoter on the details of that plan.”

Indeed, Portugal was the last race to welcome fans in 2020 as a surge in global Covid-19 cases led to the final four events taking place behind closed doors.

And now Bahrain is confirming tickets for its Grand Prix later this month will only be made eligible for fans who have been vaccinated or recently recovered from the virus.

BakuGP Start

Meanwhile, it is reported the Azerbaijan GP will return in 2021 but without fans in attendance.

Baku City Circuit PR chief Ayan Najaf-Agayeva is also reported as saying the event will be reduced from the usual four days, including media day, to three.

This suggests the Grand Prix could follow the same format as Imola last year, with one practice and qualifying on Saturday, followed by the race on Sunday.