F1 faces a 'tall order' financially to put together a 2020 season

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Forget the coronavirus, simply having the budget to put on a 2020 Formula 1 season is a "tall order", Dutch Grand Prix boss Jan Lammers says.

This weekend, the sport was meant to be racing around the upgraded Zandvoort for the first time since 1985, as F1 capitalises on the boom in popularity caused by Red Bull's Max Verstappen.

Instead, it is one of 10 races to have been cancelled or postponed due to Covid-19 and though plans are currently being made to start racing again in July, Lammers doesn't expect forming a calendar to be easy.

"It's quite a challenging puzzle because whatever Grands Prix they do without the public they will have to cover the costs for that - maybe not Austria, although I don't know for sure," he told GPFans.

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"That is quite a tall order I would imagine, so I'm sure that it's a challenge for them, not only from an agenda point of view but particularly also from a budget point of view.

"So lots of things are being discussed, and like Zandvoort, I'm sure they've also spoken to Spa, about what is feasible.

"Every track has its own price because the production of a Grand Prix, even without the public, has a different price tag, be it Hungary, Holland or England."

Recently, F1 owners, Liberty Media, raised $1.4billion for the Formula One Group to try and help with the financial impact of the coronavirus.

And with that money likely to be spent on supporting teams and races, Lammers admits it is the amount his race will need that shall determine if the Dutch GP happens in 2020.

“You are talking about quite large sums of money, which obviously not only Zandvoort has to cough up, but also in other countries,” he said.

"It is therefore also a bit about how deep the pockets of the FOM are. How much they can handle at all during this difficult period.”

But after creating such a buzz around the event which has only been possible because of Max Verstappen's huge popularity, the race promoter also says the fans will play a part in the decision.

"If F1 races in Zandvoort without an audience, it will be because the audience wants it,” he explained.

"We have seen here and there online that if the visitor has to choose between no Grand Prix in Zandvoort this year or a Grand Prix that no fans can attend, you will notice that there is a great sentiment for a Grand Prix that first only via the TV can be experienced.

“Only in such a situation can we consider it.”