Formula 1

Date set for 2020 F1 season opener

The 2020 Formula 1 season will kick off at Albert Park in Melbourne on March 15, it's been confirmed.

The Australian Grand Prix has retained its spot as the season opener, the four-day event set to kick off on Thursday March 12, with the first F1 track action on the Friday.

The date means the event once again nestles in between the Labour Day long weekend and the first round of the Australian Football League season.

The 2020 Albert Park race will be a double milestone as well, marking both the 25th anniversary of the Australian GP moving from Adelaide to Melbourne, as well as kick-starting F1's 70th anniversary celebrations.

“We are pleased to announce that, as has been the case for many years now, the next FIA Formula 1 World Championship season will get underway in Melbourne," said F1 chairman and CEO Chase Carey. 

"The Albert Park circuit is one of the most popular venues on the calendar, much appreciated by everyone who works in Formula 1. The enthusiastic reception from the Australian fans makes this round really unique and special. 

"There can be no better place to start the 2020 season, which will be significant as the sport will celebrate its 70th anniversary. 

"We are also pleased that Rolex, who have been one of our Global Partners for many years, will continue to be the title sponsor of the 2020 Australian Grand Prix.”

Australian Grand Prix Corporation CEO Andrew Westacott added: “Hosting Melbourne’s 25th Formula 1 race conjures excitement and interest, and as they said back in 1996, ‘Melbourne – what a great place for the race!’ 

"We’ve got the largest on-track programme of any Formula 1 event in the world and combined with the amount and quality of off- track entertainment, there’s something for all and it’s an event that simply must be experienced."

The announcement also means the first two rounds of the 2020 Supercars season are locked in, with a late February slot of the Adelaide 500 already confirmed.

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