Could the Canadian GP get cancelled as wildfires cause dangerous smoke?

The smog from Canada has reached as far as New York City and Connecticut


Canada is currently suffering from its worst wildfires on record and that is bad news for Formula 1.

The world’s premier motorsport series is due to head to Montreal on June 16-18 for the next instalment of the 2023 season but the current situation could put a stop to any race taking place.

The precedent has already been set this season as F1 took no risks in cancelling the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix due to the localised flooding that caused roads near the circuit to become inaccessible.

This smoke would not impact any fans from getting to the circuit but the health risks they would be putting themselves under to attend is possibly a reason to cancel the race.

The drivers and team personnel are also at risk of health issues if they inhale the smoke too much and they would rather not put themselves at risk as well.

As of June 8, F1 do not plan on delaying or cancelling the race as the weather is set to improve and the event in Montreal is not deemed to be at risk.

What’s actually happening in Canada?

According to the BBC, there have been over 2,000 wildfires already in 2023 which is on course for a Canadian record and there are 150 out of control at this very moment.

The smoke from all of those fires is coating large parts of North America in a thick, orange smog which is likely to cause serious health issues if inhaled too much. People in Canada and parts of the United States are being advised to stay indoors and close their windows to avoid the smoke.

An area as big as Belgium has already been burned to a crisp due to the wildfires and thousands nearer the fires have been evacuated from their homes to avoid long-term health issues.

Should F1 cancel the race?

It’s a question they will be asking themselves right now and they will need to get as much information as possible from the local authorities.

If they are to cancel the race, they really need to do so before anybody flies out to North America because the costs of getting freight and personnel across the Atlantic Ocean will be enormous.

Joe Ellis
Joe Ellis
Joe Ellis is a motorsport journalist with experience working in BTCC. He is the resident IndyCar correspondent for and a top class F1 writer.
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