Daniel Ricciardo has backed the notion of holding Formula 1 races without spectators if it means the 2020 season can get underway sooner. 

With the start of the 2020 F1 campaign significantly delayed by the coronavirus crisis - which has caused the postponement of the opening nine races - championship officials are assessing how best to get the season off the ground once it is safe to do so. 

A lack of racing has left the sport and its 10 teams in a vulnerable position due to a severe loss in revenue and F1 is currently discussing plans to begin the season in Austria in July 5, followed by two races at Silverstone

The solution would require both events to be held behind closed doors, although all races which take place in Europe this year could end up occurring without spectators because of the strict social distancing measures currently in place across many countries. 

Ricciardo, who will not compete on home soil this year following the cancellation of the planned season-opening Australian Grand Prix, is itching to get back to competitive action and said the enforced break has “made me so hungry”. 

Asked if he would be in favour of holding F1 races would fans, the Renault driver replied: “I’m at a point where I'm starting to watch old races and I want that feeling again - absolutely.

“There's obviously a push for a season to happen in the right circumstances," he added. “If that means some of it or the start of it is behind closed doors, so be it.

“As a competitor and for sure not racing since November, December, all I want to do right now is go racing. 

“So as soon as they say we're all clear to go... of course with a crowd is nice but if we can still race without I'll take that any day.”

The French Grand Prix on June 28 is the first scheduled race currently unaffected by the COVID-19 outbreak, though it is expected to be called off after mass public gatherings in the country were banned until at least mid-July. 

 

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