Max Verstappen, Red Bull, Zandvoort, demonstration run, 2020

Dutch Grand Prix attendance cut to two-thirds of capacity

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In the round-up: The organisers of the Dutch Grand Prix have reduced the number of spectators who may attend the race less than a month before it goes ahead.

In brief

Zandvoort stands will be two-thirds full

The first Dutch Grand Prix since 1985 will take place with stands just two-thirds full, the promoters have announced, following discussions with the government on how to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on the race.

“For me the glass is two-thirds full,” said the race’s sporting director, ex-F1 driver Jan Lammers. “We’re just going to do it. The three companies behind the Dutch Grand Prix, Circuit Zandvoort, SportVibes and TIG Sports, have decided to invest in the future of F1 in the Netherlands.”

Ticket holders are to be notified by Wednesday 18th August at the latest whether they will be able to attend the race. They will be given the option to defer their attendance to next year’s race or claim a refund.

Grid penalty for Newgarden

Josef Newgarden’s hopes of cutting his 75-point deficit to IndyCar championship leader Alex Palou have been dealt a blow. The Penske driver has incurred a six-place grid drop for this weekend’s race after an unapproved engine change. Palou has already had two such penalties this year.

Piastri targets title after qualifying gains

Piastri leads fellow Alpine junior Zhou by five points
Alpine junior driver and Formula 2 points leader Oscar Piastri is confident he can resist his more experienced rivals and secure the championship this year.

“Qualifying pace was an area we wanted to work on from the post-season tests last year and the pre-season tests this year and we’ve got on top of that,” said the reigning Formula 3 championship. “I think the pole position in Silverstone shows that hard work and that was a big positive.

“The race pace has been equally strong too. There have been a few mistakes and some things I can work on, but that’s natural as a rookie in a Formula 2 season.”

“The target is to try and win the championship,” he added. “We’re leading it at the moment, on merit. We’ve not lucked into it as we’ve been genuinely quick at every race weekend. I know I can definitely fight for the championship.”

“Everyone has almost equal chance” – De Vries

Feature: How Formula E’s incredible, 18-way world championship finale came about
Formula E championship leader Nyck de Vries feels his odds of winning the title are little better than the 17 other drivers in contention at this weekend’s season finale.

“On Sunday there will be a champion and I’m feeling good. At the same time, I believe that everyone has almost equal chances and everyone is still in contention and everything can happen.

“So we approach it as a normal weekend and then hopefully we have a weekend like London or something that is enough to maintain our position and then we are happy at the end of the day, it’s hard to really see how it’s going to unfold. We’ll just focus on our job and we’ll see where we end up.”

Dennis sticks with Andretti

BMW may be splitting with Andretti after this weekend’s Formula E season finale but the team has announced driver Jake Dennis will remain for next year.

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Social media

Notable posts from Twitter, Instagram and more:

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Comment of the day

As top teams raise concerns over the cost of crash damage, @Eurobrun sees potential for an addition to F1’s on-screen graphics:

I look forward to the helpful Amazon analytics immediately after a crash:

“Estimated damage £1.1 million. Chance of overtaking budget cap is 45% in five races’ time”.
Euro Brun (@Eurobrun)

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On this day in motorsport

  • 50 years ago today Jo Siffert took pole position for the Austrian Grand Prix at the Osterreichring

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  • 12 comments on “Dutch Grand Prix attendance cut to two-thirds of capacity”

    1. The 2/3s who are still going to be on track are just going to make up the decibels and potentially the viral load spewed out by the 1/3 who can’t be there

      1. Only issue: how much money is now missing from budget (yeah I know they are looking at asking government for money, not automatic, with the event taking place, also not sure how to feel about that)

    2. Describing Albon as an “F1 veteran” is possibly stretching things a bit…..

      1. @mrfabulous I was about to point out the same thing, but I agree, a driver who has only competed in a given series for two seasons is hardly a veteran of that series. I guess IndyCar’s definition of a ‘veteran driver’ is slightly different.

        1. Compared to most of the drivers on the Indycar grid, AA would have vast amounts more experience in F1 than the majority of them. I think it is fine for the author of the article to use the word veteran loosely to mean if he moved to Indycar he’d be bringing his experience from F1.

    3. Still better than empty grandstands, although this option is also a possibility at worst.
      A full-capacity crowd is unnecessary, after all.

      F1 veteran? A driver who has done two seasons is hardly a veteran. I guess some people define the term differently, but still.

      I like COTD’s sarcasm.

    4. 2/3rds of the capacity. That’s one way to lessen the booing from the grandstands.

      1. I think the 2/3 who will be allowed to attend will be Verstappen fans. The booing will continue.

        1. I think the 1/3rd that aren’t allowed in are Verstappen fans too though.

    5. It would be cool to see RBR put together an Indycar team using some of the extra hundreds of millions they won’t be spending on F1 under the new budget caps.

    6. Probably has nothing to do with the pandemic, but more with low visibility due to all the orange smoke. Dangerous for air traffic…

      1. Total nonsense mate .. all events in The Netherlands where there are seats like for this race or in football stadiums only 2/3 are allowed in because the dutch government has ordered this. Events with no seats like dance festivals it’s even worse .. only 750 are allowed. So all ticketholders who has a ticket on the ground (standing) and not sitting on a stand will be automatically be banned from the race. It has nothing to do with orange smoke!

    Comments are closed.