2022 New Zealand Grand Prix cancelled

The 2022 running of the New Zealand Grand Prix has been cancelled due to the country's ongoing border controls.

2022 New Zealand Grand Prix cancelled

The 67th running of the famous race was set to take place at Hampton Downs next month, effectively forming a one-event Toyota Racing Series season.

However, citing NZ's ongoing border restrictions and its impact on the field, Toyota Gazoo Racing New Zealand has cancelled the GP.

According to the announcement, at least eight international drivers were unable to get a spot in NZ's Managed Isolation and Quarantine system.

"We have waited until the last possible moment to give potential drivers a chance to get to New Zealand for the GP event," explained TGRNZ Motorsport Manager Nicolas Caillol.

“However, with the border restrictions currently in place and all of those drivers simply unable to find MIQ spots, we do not believe we can run the Grand Prix that we or the spectators want to see or that the event itself deserves, so we have very reluctantly decided to cancel this year's race.

"Those eight [international drivers] would have made a big difference to the quality and size of our grid for the GP and had they been able to get here, we would have been able to put on a great show.

“It remains very challenging in the current economic climate for young drivers to raise sponsorship here in New Zealand. That’s despite the welcome support offered by the Tony Quinn Foundation, Castrol and numerous other companies and organisations who invest in our young Kiwi driving talent.

“We are so thankful many great Kiwi drivers wanted to return to help support this great event and our young drivers. I’d like to extend my thanks to everyone involved, this decision was not in spite of your efforts."

This is just the sixth time the NZGP has been cancelled, and the first due to the pandemic.

The 2020 running of the race happened before the pandemic took hold, while the 2021 race was framed as a 'Kiwi All Stars' affair won by Supercars champion Shane van Gisbergen.

In general TRS has been badly hit by COVID, though, with travel restrictions making it impossible for it to serve its now traditional role as a winter escape for young European talent.

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