F1 confirms Canadian Grand Prix is “not at risk”

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The 2023 Canadian Grand Prix is not at risk amid the ongoing wildfires affecting much of Quebec as well as Ottawa.

Race start of the 2018 Canadian Grand Prix at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve
Photo: Red Bull Content Pool

With much of Canada and areas of the United States currently being negatively impacted by the ongoing wildfires in Canada, concerns have been raised ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix scheduled for next weekend.

While areas of Quebec are suffering from 133 active wildfires and the consequential air pollution, at time of writing according to SOPFEU, and the government advising citizens to remain indoors or don N95 masks if venturing outdoors in the smoky conditions. The potential health risk has raised concerns ahead of the planned Grand Prix.

“The situation in Montreal at this time is different to other parts of the country…”

A spokesperson from Formula 1 however has announced there is no risk to the event at this time. With air quality in Montreal currently rated as ‘good’ and expected to remain as such until at least Tuesday according to iqair.com, the risk to next week’s Grand Prix is currently low.

“The event is not at risk,” Formula 1’s spokesperson said. “And we have been assured by all the relevant information that the situation in Montreal at this time is different to other parts of the country and northern US and the risk remains low and air quality is good in Montreal.”

Map of the currently active wildfires in Quebec
Photo: sopfeu.qc.ca

With wind carrying the smoke from the fires as far as New York City at time of writing however, the situation may remain unpredictable. Forecasts currently expect the haziness and poor air quality brought on by the fires to persist for a further few days in affected areas.

Formula 1 are currently monitoring the situation with the spokesperson commenting that at this time neither the ongoing fires nor the smoke pose a threat to the Grand Prix.

“These fires are 800 km from the circuit and do not pose any risk on their own, but the winds have carried the smoke to other parts of the region.”

“We will keep you all informed of any developments.”

However, Formula 1’s Incident Management Group will continue to monitor the situation as the Grand Prix grows closer due to the unpredictable nature of the weather and the changing situation in the region.

“The F1 Incident Management Group continues to keep the situation under constant review,” they noted. “With regular meetings and while there are no concerns at this time we will keep you all informed of any developments.”

Formula 1 will continue to monitor the situation and update should there be any changes affecting the 2023 Canadian Grand Prix.