2023 Imola Formula 1 Grand Prix cancelled amid major flooding
The Emilia-Romagna region has been struck by severe floods, forcing organisers to cancel this weekend’s race
Persistent heavy rain has caused major damage and disruption in northern Italy this week, and in light of severe floods at the Imola circuit and the surrounding area, this weekend’s Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix has been cancelled. The announcement comes following discussions between the event organisers and local authorities, who have chosen to call off the race to prioritise the safety of F1 personnel, fans and local residents.
Hosting the Grand Prix would have almost certainly placed further stress on resources and emergency services in the area, with thousands descending on the circuit over the course of the weekend. Many locals have already evacuated their homes due to the horrific weather conditions, which has seen devastating property damage and electricity dropouts. In the lead up to the weekend, the F1 paddock was submerged underwater and team members were urged not to travel to the circuit, which is situated adjacent to a river with rising water levels.
‘It is such a tragedy to see what has happened to Imola and Emilia Romagna, the town and region that I grew up in and my thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the flooding and the families and communities affected’, said Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali.
‘I want to express my gratitude and admiration for the incredible emergency services who are working tirelessly to help those who need help and alleviate the situation – they are heroes and the whole of Italy is proud of them. The decision that has been taken is the right one for everyone in the local communities and the F1 family as we need to ensure safety and not create extra burden for the authorities while they deal with this very awful situation.’
It’s unlikely that the event will be rescheduled for later in the year, given that the 2023 calendar is already tightly packed with a record 24 races. Following Imola’s cancellation, preparations will commence for the Monaco Grand Prix next weekend.