Due to issues related to COVID-19, the 2021 Australian Grand Prix has been canceled. Local organizers and Formula One were unable to agree on travel and quarantine guidelines in the country, which has been very strict on protocols during the pandemic.
The race was originally moved from March 21 to November 21, but even the extra time did not result in a compromise between the two parties.
"It's very disappointing that these much-loved events can't proceed but this is the reality of the pandemic, but until we get much higher vaccination rates we cannot return to more normal settings," Victorian Sports Minister Martin Pakula said.
Pakula explained further why the race is off, via the Associated Press:
"There's a few months to go, but they need to plan, and they need to have contingencies in place. Given the very low national two-dose-vaccination numbers ... we're simply not in a position to give F1 management the sorts of guarantees and assurances and comfort that they need."
Victorian state Premier Daniel Andrews also commented on the cancelation, saying putting on any type of event is "very challenging." Andrews, like Pakula, also noted the low vaccination numbers and travel restrictions as reasons why the event was canceled.
Formula One chief executive Stefano Domenicali believes that Formula One may be able to return to Melboune in April of 2022 at the earliest.