Another version of the 2014 F1 schedule has been issued following the latest meeting of the FIA World Motor Sport Council, and features the changes widely expected by the paddock.
The latest calendar is expected to be as close to final as any previously issued, allowing teams to begin booking their trips around the globe for 19 events between mid-March and late November.
As anticipated, there is no visit to either Mexico or New Jersey, as time conspired against both venues being race-ready for 2014, while Korea joins India in missing from the list of events staged this season. India is expected to return – or at least bid for a return – in 2015, but the future of the Korean round is thought to be less rosy.
The published calendar features one new event, the Russian Grand Prix in Sochi, while Austria makes a welcome return, with the Red Bull
Ring adding to the drinks brand's presence in the top flight.
As expected, the season starts in Australia – despite pre-season testing being slated for Bahrain – but the opener is followed by a two-week break before the circus reconvenes in Malaysia, which forms a back-to-back pairing with Bahrain. China, the last of the early season 'flyaways' is also a stand-alone event, potentially adding to the logistical headache for teams.
There are two European rounds – in Spain and Monaco – before the first trans-Atlantic crossing to take in the Canadian Grand Prix, but the mid-season congestion inspired by New Jersey's planned inclusion has been alleviated, allowing for more measured progress through the summer. Austria slots in two weeks after Canada, with Britain another fortnight later, as Germany and Hungary form the only other double-header before the mid-season break.
The campaign resumes in Belgium after the hiatus, with Italy, Singapore and Japan next up, all at two week intervals. Suzuka has been moved ahead of the new Sochi round, allegedly following concerns about getting equipment out of Russia in time for a back-to-back pairing.
The USA and Brazil continue to run on successive weekends, before a fortnight's interval to the season finale which, as expected, reverts from Interlagos to Abu Dhabi.
The full schedule is as follows:
March 16 Australia
March 30 Malaysia
April 6 Bahrain
April 20 China
May 11 Spain
May 25 Monaco
June 8 Canada
June 22 Austria
July 6 Britain
July 20 Germany
July 27 Hungary
August 24 Belgium
September 7 Italy
September 21 Singapore
October 5 Japan
October 12 Russia
November 2 United States
November 9 Brazil
November 23 Abu Dhabi