The 2022 Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix will welcome a crowd of 100,000 per day, as confirmed this week by the the event organisers, as the Australian Grand Prix Corporation will today officially announce the on-sale date for corporate hospitality and general admission tickets for the race which is scheduled next year in April.
In a recent interview for speedcafe.com, Australian Grand Prix Corporation chief executive Andrew Westacott said that the April 7-10 event will be open crowd numbers the same as those in years prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Talking with government, I can say straight away that the current thinking is 50,000 as a minimum, and I think it’s more likely to be 50 to 100,000 on any day, such is the way society is moving, and the Victorian Government is moving on getting these events back. The two big tests before us are going to be the Boxing Day cricket at the MCG, and then also the Australian Open.” – the Melbourne F1 supremo explained.
Fans attending the MCG in December will be required to physically distance, while food, beverage, and merchandise outlets will be cashless. Speaking last month, Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews admitted that he hoped to see more than 80,000 fans at the event – short of the venue’s 100,000 capacity.
“We will have to set – what’s the capacity of a venue, for instance. There will be a policy, there will be a plan. That will relate to things like how the bathrooms are configured, hand hygiene, all that sort of stuff. The reason for that is the virus will still be here, it’ll only be for vaccinated adults, but there’s going to be a bunch of kids that’ll be at that cricket match, and at the footy next year. They are not vaccinated, they can’t be vaccinated, so in recognition of that it’ll be a percentage – it won’t be 100 percent, but we want to get it as close to that 100 percent as we can. 80,000 is not just a number, 80,000 would be the biggest crowd in our country since COVID came. I reckon that’d be a really important day for all of us.” – Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said.
Formula 1 has already hosted a number of heavily fan attended events during the current championship: the Austin race, which took place last month, reportedly attracted 400,000 fans across the weekend, while the 2021 British Grand Prix in July saw more than 140,000 fans in attendance. At Silverstone, fans were asked to produce a negative lateral flow test taken 48 hours prior to arrival at the venue, or proof of full vaccination.
Despite the facts that some specifics in Melbourne should be different, Andrew Westacott acknowledges there will be some concessions made in Albert Park because of the pandemic. For the most part, however, the experience will be much as it was pre-COVID.
“There’s going to be safeguards, there’s going to have to be ways of operating and so on to make sure that we’re across all the health requirements. But that’s going to become part of the norm whether you’re a shopping centre or you’re a stadium or anything like that for football, A League, basketball, you name it. It’s going to be back to 2018, 2019, 2020, but with a couple of added extras: new design track, new designed cars, new facilities, and a new design of enterprise as well, so I reckon it’s actually going to be a bonanza.” – Australian Formula One Grand Prix chief Andrew Westacott concluded.