The President of the Emilia Romagna region says he hopes spectators will be permitted to attend April’s grand prix at Imola.
Imola returned to the coronavirus-hit calendar in 2020, 14 years after its last appearances, under the auspices of the Emilia Romagna region.
Imola was not listed on the provisional 2021 schedule but on Tuesday it was confirmed that it is set to host the second round of the revised calendar on April 18.
Plans were drawn up for up to 13,000 spectators to attend last autumn’s round but the worsening situation in Italy in the days prior to the event meant it had to be held behind closed doors.
Several nations, particularly in Europe, are in the midst of a spike of Covid-19 cases and fatalities, with Italy braced to introduce tighter measures in the coming days.
“Imola is preparing to welcome the first European round of the 2021 championship,” said Emilia Romagna President Stefano Bonaccini.
“We are hoping to be able to open the circuit to the public, albeit with a capacity and within the limits that can guarantee maximum safety.
“We continue to propose sporting events as few others are able to do, giving continuity to a program of national and international events of a high caliber.
“From here the desire is not to stop, to demonstrate once again that when we must insist on fighting the virus, and with the launch of the vaccination campaign that must make us look to the next months with confidence, we are ready to rebuild.”
Imola’s mayor, Marco Panieri, added that “the possibility of special protocols for this type of event will be evaluated with the national government and the region, in order to verify the possible presence of the public.”
Of last year’s events a limited number of spectators were allowed at Mugello, Sochi, the Nurburgring and Portimao, while health workers were invited to attend rounds at Monza and Bahrain.