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Cricket stars and footballers to compete in Sunday’s Virtual Grand Prix

Publish Date: 30/04/2020
Fact checked by: Jordan Noble

In the absence of 2024’s Formula 1 season, F1 stars have joined together and last month launched the new F1 Esports Virtual Grand Prix Series.

This consists of F1 drivers and some special guests competing with one another using the official F1 2019 PC video game.

The race taking place on Sunday night will not only feature F1 stars Antonio Giovinazzi, Alex Albon, George Russell, Nicholas Latifi and two time Virtual Grand Prix race winner and Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc, but also Norwegian rally champion Petter Solberg, AC Milan captain Alessio Romagnoli and England cricketers Stuart Broad and Ben Stokes.

On his official Twitter page Solberg posted “Making my @F1 debut at 45, all without leaving my house... this will be exciting!”

Cricketer Ben Stokes who driving for Red Bull, came 18th in the second F1 Virtual Grand Prix at Melbourne's Albert Park Circuit said "The last race was a great experience to understand what F1 racing is really about and I really enjoyed it."

Another thing F1 bosses are doing to boost spirits during this time, is giving fans from all over the world the opportunity to go against their favourite F1 drivers.

On non-race weekends, F1 will host online exhibition races, details of which will be released across the official Formula 1 social media channels in the next few weeks.

How F1 are helping the fight against Coronavirus

Seven Formula 1 teams have joined together to create Project Pitlane in the fight against coronavirus.

Haas, McLaren, Mercedes, Racing Point, Red Bull, Renault and Williams are using their manufacturing expertise to answer the UK Governments pleas for breathing supplies.

A breathing device designed and created by Mercedes and University College London has already been approved for mass production by the National Health Service.

F1’s plans for 2024 races

In a recent video published on the official F1 Youtube channel, it is announced that plans are to begin the actual 2024 F1 season behind closed doors in Austria and other circuits on the continent from July 5 this year.

The targeted calendar then includes races in Europe, Eurasia, Asia and The Americas before finishing the 15-18 race season in the Middle East.

This of course all depends on how the pandemic pans out. On their social media pages F1 stated “Health and safety of all involved will continue to be priority one and we will only go forward if we are confident we have reliable procedures to address both risks and possible issues.”

F1 is expecting the early races to have no fans in attendance but are hoping it will be safe for fans to return before the season ends.

The Virtual Grand Prix will begin on Sunday May 3 at 6pm GMT and can be viewed on the official F1 Youtube channel, Sky Sports F1 and the official F1 Twitch and Facebook sites.

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