Three-week break set to continue

The wishes of most grand prix teams look set to be heeded with the continuation of the three-week summer break established this year

Three-week break set to continue

The first draft 2003 F1 calendar saw the season beginning in Melbourne a week later than this year then continuing through to Japan in October with a race every fortnight.

Team principals feel, however, that their race teams need the summer break and the likely solution is that the Hungarian Grand Prix, scheduled for August 17, will be delayed a week and then run back-to-back with Spa, which is on August 31.

The Spa race itself is likely to be provisional, pending a solution to the projected August 1 ban on tobacco advertising in Belgium. Another problem with the traditional Spa date is that there is a Belgian festival on the same weekend, putting what some say will be untenable pressure on accommodation and access routes.

The Belgian race organisers are apparently keen on bringing the race forward to get around their potential problems and one logical suggestion is for Spa to swap dates with the Austrian Grand Prix on May 18. That would mean Austria following a week after the rescheduled Hungary, which seems geographically workable as far as set-up time for Bernie Ecclestone's large FOM broadcasting operation is concerned.

Watch this space...

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