The Vietnamese Grand Prix has been dropped from the 2021 Formula 1 calendar, raising doubts that the race will ever take place.
A street race in the capital Hanoi was due to make its debut in April this year before it was called off as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The date of the Vietnam race, 25 April, has been left blank on a 22-race schedule for 2021 published on Tuesday. The calendar could extend to 23 grands prix – a new record – if F1 can find a replacement for Vietnam.
The 2021 season is scheduled to start in Australia on 21 March and end in Abu Dhabi on 5 December.
The British Grand Prix at Silverstone is on 18 July and the new Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, announced last week, the penultimate race on 28 November.
Following the experience of establishing this year’s truncated season, and talks with the countries involved for 2021, F1 said it was confident it would be able to run its calendar next year as long as the global pandemic does not take a major turn for the worse.
An F1 statement said: “The plans for 2021 have involved extensive dialogue with all promoters and their local and national authorities at a time of ongoing fluidity related to the global pandemic.
“Formula 1 and the FIA put in place robust health and safety measures to allow the revised 2020 season to restart and run effectively.
“Our hosts for 2021 are reassured by our safe return to racing this season and confident that the plans and procedures we have in place will allow us to return to a level of normality for the 2021 season.”