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Sport McLaren first on track as F1 season finally starts

13:45  03 july  2020
13:45  03 july  2020 Source:   reuters.com

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This is the first time a track has hosted two races within a season , with Silverstone set to follow when it hosts a couple of races later on next month… Pre- season testing finished all the way back in February, before an unprecedented hiatus occurred due to the global pandemic. But now, finally , the

the Formula One season finally gets underway this weekend on another continent and in a F 1 still hopes to rearrange some of the postponed races in order to finish the season with 15-18 of the ''We actually don't even know the amount of races we are going to do,'' McLaren and future Ferrari driver

a large stadium with a mountain in the background: Austrian Grand Prix © Reuters/LEONHARD FOEGER Austrian Grand Prix

SPIELBERG, Austria (Reuters) - McLaren's Carlos Sainz was first out on track as the opening free practice session of the much-delayed Formula One season got underway at a damp and overcast Red Bull Ring on Friday.

a small boat in a body of water: Austrian Grand Prix © Reuters/LEONHARD FOEGER Austrian Grand Prix

Sunday's race, the first of two in Austria on successive weekends, will be the latest start to a championship after the COVID-19 pandemic forced the cancellation of the scheduled Australian opener on March 15 before a wheel had turned.

a close up of a baseball game: Austrian Grand Prix © Reuters/POOL Austrian Grand Prix

Friday was the first time all the drivers had been on track together since the end of pre-season testing in Barcelona last February.

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 Zak Brown sees © Motorsport Images Zak Brown looks at the 2020 Formula 1 season with due caution The late start of the Formula 1 season is only a few days away. But when the teams and drivers contest their first race of the year this weekend in Spielberg, it remains unclear how many of them will actually be there in the 2020 season, which will affect Corona. Officially, only eight Grand Prix are currently scheduled on European soil. Further confirmations should follow in the next days and weeks.

MERCEDES: Everything you need to know before the 2020 F 1 season starts . Given the uncertainty about how many races will actually be run in the 2020 F 1 season , McLaren ’s Carlos Sainz has underlined the importance of making the most of every points-scoring opportunity this year, as his

Formula 1 season starts 4 months later in a different world. F 1 still hopes to rearrange some of the postponed races in order to finish the season with 15-18 of the scheduled 22. "We actually don't even know the amount of races we are going to do," McLaren and future Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz

The last time any of them raced was in Abu Dhabi in December last year.

"Motor Sport is back!," said International Automobile Federation (FIA) president Jean Todt on Twitter, moments after the cars left the Spielberg pitlane to begin lapping the scenic circuit.

"It's good to hear the engines and see cars again and almost get back to some phase of normality," Red Bull team boss Christian Horner told Sky F1 television.

"We all look like we're in some kind of hospital programme, with all the face masks and the PPE (personal protective equipment)... but other than that working practices are very much as normal.

"This is day one of the season so it's a little bit odd coming here halfway through the year."

The race is being run under strict health and safety conditions, with teams operating in 'bubbles' and isolated from each other in a paddock, with drivers wearing face masks even when talking to the media by video link.

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In the final part of our series looking at how all of the teams are shaping up for the delayed Formula 1 season , it’s time to check in on the defending champions Will it be another season of glory for the Silver Arrows? Or will a key departure and uncertainty over some of the leading personnel in the team

McLaren are the first Formula 1 team to put some of their staff on furlough, meaning they must take an enforced absence from work due to the impact of the F 1 ’s rulemakers are currently working on plans with regards the season restarting , with F 1 CEO Chase Carey saying last month: “we and our

a close up of an umbrella on a track: Austrian Grand Prix © Reuters/POOL Austrian Grand Prix

The race will be run completely without spectators for the first time in Formula One history.

"We are all used to a lot of fans in the campsites, grandstands...but the most important thing is we are finally back on track and can put up a good show," said McLaren principal Andreas Seidl on a Zoom call.

McLaren triggered the abandonment of the Australian race in Melbourne after an employee tested positive for the new coronavirus.

Seidl said the entire team had a clean bill of health after the latest round of tests.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin in London, editing by Toby Davis)

Andreas Seidl: More than P5 is not possible for McLaren .
Despite the successful start to the season for McLaren, Andreas Seidl warns of hasty conclusions - he realistically sees his team in fifth place under normal circumstances With the podium result in Spielberg's first Formula 1 race , when Lando Norris sensationally finished third, , McLaren has fueled some expectations.

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