Less than an hour after race organisers announced that they were planning to push on with the Albert Park event, even with the F1 race set to be cancelled imminently, the government made clear fans would not be allowed in to the venue.
With queues having already formed at the track gates, as the original opening time was delayed, the Victoria state’s intervention meant they were eventually turned away.
Victorian premier Daniel Andrews told 7News Sydney: “On public health grounds, there will be no spectators at the grand prix this weekend if a race actually happens at all. That is a matter for them and they will make announcements very soon.”
In the wake of McLaren’s withdrawal from the F1 season opener, after a member of its staff was diagnosed with coronavirus, teams and F1 chiefs got together on Thursday night to discuss the next step. Sources say that a majority of outfits voted against the race going ahead, with the FIA accepting that judgement.
High level meetings have been taking place in Melbourne on Friday morning to discuss the next steps, and whether or not the support races will continue.
In the meantime, teams have begun arriving at the track to commence packing up of their equipment.