Istanbul Park is back on the F1 calendar for the first time since 2011, added as an extra round to a finalised 17-race schedule which has had to be drastically rejigged due to the global health pandemic.
At a recent press conference, Vural Ak, chairman of race promoters Intercity, revealed he was aiming for a six-figure attendance at the grand prix which, for the time being, will be a one-off return to Turkey.
Although a 100,000 attendance hardly sounds COVID-secure, the open-plan nature of the venue and a 220,000 capacity means social distancing will be easier to observe.
General admission tickets for the race being priced at 30 Turkish lira (£3) per day, or 90 lira for all three days, is another reason why demand has already been so high.
Over 40,000 tickets were sold in just six hours after going on sale, with 10,000 alone in the first hour.
“We were planning to fill the full capacity, 220,000 seats, under normal circumstances but it’s not possible with COVID-19,” said Ak, quoted by Motorsport.com.
“We are passionate and enthusiastic about this sport and we can organise it successfully. But as you know, there is COVID-19. That’s why we hope to bring about 100,000 people.”
While being open to the possibility of a spike in coronavirus cases forcing a change of plan, Ak said he believes protocols put in place should ensure a bumper crowd.
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F1 2020 NEXT RACE
|Portugal ||25 Oct|
|10h00 - 11h30||Free practice 1|
|14h00 - 15h30||Free practice 2|
|11h00 - 12h00||Free practice 3|
|14h00 - 15h00||Qualification|
|14h10 - 16h10||Race|