Where F1’s calendar shuffling hurts its new drivers

OPINION: Formula 1 endured major scheduling challenges thanks to the pandemic in 2020, but still managed to save its season. These difficulties remain in 2021 and create a tough knock-on effect for the championship’s new arrivals.

Sometimes, life needs something new, something different.

In 2020, one of the very few upsides to the hideous impact of the coronavirus pandemic was that, in terms of the schedule at least, Formula 1 had a dose of variety thrown in. Of course this came at a cost, for the championship’s business model thrives on tracks and certain countries paying to host races, but it did provide a variance flavour. The Nurburgring, Imola and Istanbul returned, while Mugello, Portimao and the Bahrain ‘outer loop’ made first-time appearances.

The necessary changes to F1’s schedule were painful as ‘normality’ evaporated, but the variation it provided reinforced its value – which applies across all of sport – as escapism. How excellent it was to wonder about what racing the Mugello’s brutal nature would provide when F1 rocked up at the MotoGP paradise.

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