Formula 1 teams have agreed to bring the summer break forward following a delayed start to the 2020 season due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The break - which is traditionally slated for August - has been moved forward to March-April, with a mandarory three-week period (21 days) now taking place between March and lasting until the end of April. 

All of F1’s 10 teams are understood to have been onboard with the switch during an e-vote on Wednesday. In such scenarios, agreement is needed between at least seven teams to push through any changes. 

Switching the mandatory shutdown period allows F1 greater flexibility in trying to reschedule already-postponed races back onto the calendar, with championship bosses and officials determined to ensure at least 17 events are held this year. 

The start of the 2020 season is likely to be no earlier than the Monaco Grand Prix on May 24, with the Dutch and Spanish grands prix expected to be the next casualties of the COVID-19 outbreak, adding to the already postponed rounds in Australia, Bahrain, China and Vietnam. 

The summer break is usually restricted to a fortnight but teams have agreed to extend this to three weeks with many team members currently observing the first week of a two-week self-isolation period following an outbreak of coronavirus in the F1 paddock in Melbourne. 

Ferrari had already been forced to suspend all production at its road-car and F1 factories in Italy, while Mercedes had intended to keep its Brackley and Brixworth bases open despite the UK government’s advice for people to start working from home. 

While teams have been handed freedom in terms of where exactly during the three week window to have their respective shutdown, they must observe a 21-day consecutive period that will deter teams from ignoring government recommendations by continuing to pursue development for a potential competitive advantage. 

Red Bull has become the first team to confirm its shutdown plans, which it hopes to begin on March 27. 

It will, however, lead to the likelihood of a heavily-congested fixture of F1 races towards the end of 2020, placing great strain on all personnel involved in the championship.