THREE Grand Prix races in Singapore, Azerbaijan and Japan have all been cancelled in what has come as a major blow to Formula 1.
They join an increasingly long list of races to be axed due to the pandemic which includes the curtain-raiser in Australia.
F1 is still looking at ways to schedule as many races as possible, with organisers hopeful of getting between 15 and 18 in the calendar by the time the season ends.
The last Grand Prix of the season is to be held in Dubai in December.
News that races in Singapore, Azerbaijan and Japan are not going ahead has hampered efforts of F1 bosses to fill up the race calendar for the rest of the year.
An F1 statement read: ‘As a result of the ongoing challenges presented by Covid-19, we and our promoters in Azerbaijan, Singapore and Japan have taken the decision to cancel their races for the 2020 season.
‘These decisions have been taken due to the different challenges our promoters face in those countries. In Singapore and Azerbaijan the long lead times required to construct street circuits made hosting the events during a period of uncertainty impossible and in Japan, ongoing travel restrictions also led to the decision not to proceed with the race.
‘At the same time we have made significant progress with existing and new promoters on the revised calendar and have been particularly encouraged by the interest that has been shown by new venues in hosting a Formula 1 race during the 2020 season.’