Will the Formula 1 Grand Prix be held in Canada this year? Public health authorities in Ottawa, Quebec and Montreal are bypassing responsibility to see if they will approve the race.
Quebec says it awaits Ottawa’s decision … while Ottawa says it waits for Quebec and Montreal to make their final decisions.
For the race to be held in Montreal in June, Federal Public Health must agree to an exemption from sanitary rules to reduce the teams’ quarantine period.
According to the information obtained Journalism From a federal source, in order for the federal public health to agree to an exemption from the sanitary regulations, the exemption must have been recommended by the health authorities of the county and city in question. Federal Public Health generally works this way with these types of exemption requests. In the event that the Grand Prix asks to reduce the quarantine period (F1 is running a race in Azerbaijan seven days ago), the Canadian Public Health Agency requests public health prior approval. The proposed plan. According to a federal source, Ottawa has not formally received a positive written recommendation from the health authorities in Quebec and Montreal. Therefore Ottawa considers that it cannot give an answer to the Grand Prix organizers at their request as long as the public health in Quebec and Montreal does not provide their official approval in writing.
Even if Quebec and Montreal agree to this, Ottawa must make its own assessment of the exemption requested. It is far from certain that the federal public health will approve this waiver for the nearly 1,600 people arriving from abroad. Since the quarantine began, Ottawa has not accepted such a broad request for exemption for many people at the same time.
On the part of the Legault government, Minister of Tourism, Caroline Brooks, said in an interview with Journalism Thursday afternoon she was still waiting for federal public health advice. “Public Health Quebec has granted permission to hold the Grand Prix behind closed doors. Now I need to get advice from Federal Public Health, which I am waiting for all the time. “MI Brooks also says he hopes Montreal will host the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Canada this summer.
In a written statement sent to JournalismMontreal DSB had reservations about running the race.
“Faced with the uncertainty about the variables, the Montreal Regional Public Health Department expressed reservations about holding the event in early June, which could lead to an outbreak and contribute to the deterioration of the currently fragile epidemiological situation in Montreal.”
“Concerns are related to the gathering of more than 2,500 visitors with high potential to contact volunteers or local staff involved in organizing the event; the impossibility of respecting the forty travelers coming from the event held in Baku last week; and the holding of potential gatherings around the visitors’ accommodations.”
“We asked [Ministère de la Santé et des services sociaux] To consider these concerns in their decision and to strengthen protocols in the event of an event, “indicated Saint General’s Department of Montreal.
In Quebec, the unfavorable opinion of public health in Montreal raised some surprise. So far, the National Director of Public Health, Horacio Arruda, has sent all indications that holding the event behind closed doors would be possible under certain circumstances.
Mayor Valerie Blunt was concerned about introducing the Grand Prix this summer. “The fact that public health in Montreal has issued an opinion unfavorable to the holding of the Grand Prix, even behind closed doors, is information we must take. At this point, what we want is for public health departments to talk to each other and to be able to formalize Everything. I think that’s the least of it. ”
“In the end, whatever the decision […] What we’re working on is the continuation of the Montreal Grand Prix. ”
In Quebec, Minister of the Economy, Pierre Fitzgibbon, echoed the words of his colleague Caroline Brolux, namely, “the desire of the Quebec government to preserve the Grand Prix.”
“We want to reduce costs, but we want to keep the big prize. […] Obviously, health will take precedence over the economy. […] The question is knowing: If the Grand Prix is canceled this year (I say “if”), how can we make the Grand Prix sustainable. ”
In Ottawa, the Head of Government, Pablo Rodriguez, noted, “The sustainability of the Montreal Grand Prix is extremely important to all of our citizens.”
If the event is confirmed to be canceled, it will be the second year in a row that the Canadian Grand Prix has been canceled due to health reasons due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Governments have an agreement with F1 to offer the race through 2029. They pay 18.7 million a year to be entitled to submit the race in Montreal. Earlier this week, Quebec Premier Francois Legault hinted that the future of the Grand Prix would be uncertain if the race was canceled this year.
F1 is also asking for an additional six million compensation this year if the Grand Prix is held behind closed doors so that the local promoter can pay their expenses in organizing the race.