Currently reading: BTCC alters 2021 calendar to boost spectator hopes
Season to start without fans on 8 May, but organisers hopeful of opening doors at remaining nine meetings
James Attwood, digital editor
News
2 mins read
15 March 2021

The 2021 British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) season will start without spectators present at Thruxton on 8 May, but organisers have moved back the next two events in order to maximise the chance that fans will be able to attend the remaining nine meetings.

Series bosses had previously delayed the start of the season by five weeks from 3 April in the hope that easing coronavirus restrictions would enable spectators to attend race meetings. Following the publication of the government's roadmap to easing restrictions, two minor tweaks have now been made to that calendar.

Due to date limitations, the Thruxton season-opener remains on 8 May, meaning that fans will be unable to attend. But the next two rounds at Snetterton and Brands Hatch have been pushed back until after the date on which the government is hoping to permit spectators at sporting events.

The Snetterton event is moved from 15/16 May to 12/13 June and Brands Hatch is switched from 12/13 June to 26/27 June.

No further alterations have been made, and the revised calendar remains a full 10-event, 30-race season. While spectators won't be allowed at the Thruxton opener, they should be allowed to attend the second race at the Hampshire circuit on 28/29 August. The season is due to end on the Brands Hatch Indy circuit on 23/24 October. 

Prime minister Boris Johnson has warned that the current national lockdown could continue in some form until Easter, with the potential for localised tiers to return beyond that.

The BTCC recently confirmed a full grid of 29 cars for 2021. TOCA held back issuing three additional BTCC licences (TBLs) in line with its ambition “to gradually reduce the size of the BTCC grid". 

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Symanski 14 January 2021

The current lockdowns are going to last well in to February and probably until the end of March at the earliest. After that, it will still be sports behind closed doors. Only by mid summer will we start to see light at the end of the tunnel with vaccines, and then we will still have to be careful as immunity may be short (given that people can catch COVID more than once).

 

All sports should plan that 2021 is a repeat of 2020 with tighter restrictions. And if it is not, then it is a bonus.