The Canadian Grand Prix scheduled for June 14 has been postponed on request of its organisers because of the coronavirus pandemic, further delaying the start of the Formula One season.
Montreal's Circuit de Gilles Villeneuve is a semi-permanent circuit, and organisers had to make a call by this weekend due to the lead time required to prepare for the race. On Tuesday it was confirmed the race could not go ahead as scheduled.
Organisers said that they would have been "honoured" to have been the season's opening race and that the postponement "was not a decision that was taken lightly or easily".
It is still hoped the race can be rescheduled for later this year. F1 CEO Chase Carey said in Tuesday's statement "we will put on a great show when we arrive later this year", but Montreal's climate leaves F1 with a limited timeframe in which to make that a reality. It is believed October is the latest a race could be held in the city, but F1 is hoping to hold the race as early as possible in the summer.
F1's season has yet to start -- the opening eight races have failed to take place on their allocated weekends. While every other event has officially been postponed, organisers of the Monaco Grand Prix cancelled their event outright when it became clear the event could not be held on May 24.
This season was supposed to feature a record 22 races. CEO Chase Carey said last month that he still hopes to put on 15-18 races if the championship can start at some point in the summer.
The next race now on the calendar as planned is the French Grand Prix, on June 28, at the Paul Ricard circuit. A decision on that race is expected to come by the end of April.