Formula 1 will host an official launch event to mark the start of the 2019 season on the eve of the Australian Grand Prix. 

In what will be the first ever official launch of such magnitude on the eve of an F1 season, all 20 drivers and 10 teams will be present for the event in the heart of Melbourne on Wednesday March 13, days prior to the season-opening grand prix. 

The event, which will be free for fans to attend, has been organised in partnership with the Australian Grand Prix Corporation (AGPC) to help boost fan engagement with teams and drivers as they participate in a live stage show. 

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“Since 1996, except on two occasions, Formula 1, the greatest racing spectacle in the world has kicked off its year in Melbourne and there really couldn’t be a location better than this fantastic city,” said F1 managing director Sean Bratches. 

“The passion, knowledge and enthusiasm of the Melbourne crowd deserved a special thanks and this is why we have decided to organise the first ever season launch event in the history of the sport.”

The event will also feature an “exciting entertainment” line-up including an array of music acts in line with similar festival events that have taken place across five different cities since the inaugural event in London in July 2017. 

The season launch will also be live-streamed across F1’s social media platforms to ensure viewing for its global fanbase ahead of a season that will celebrate the sport’s 1000th race at the Chinese Grand Prix in April. 

“We are incredibly excited to be putting on such a spectacle for our fans,” Bratches continued. “It’s vital that we put them at the heart of everything we do, and this event provides us with a platform to engage with fans not just locally but also globally. 

“The 2019 season also marks another historic moment for the sport as we celebrate our 1000th Grand Prix in China later this year and we are excited to see all the teams come together to kick off the season with a bang.”