Boullier admits French GP date change was “a big challenge”

Formula One – Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport, French GP 2019. Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas. Credits: Daimler.

Eric Boullier reveals that the change of dates of the French Grand Prix has brought some difficulties.

The French GP is set to take place on June 18th-20th, a week earlier than intended to make sure that the Austrian double-header will go ahead. However, the managing director of the French GP Boullier has said that these circumstances have caused some complications in different aspects.

“It was a big problem. You don’t set a Grand Prix up in the last three days. It’s a few months’ work which we had to scrap and to adjust and to move,” he told

“During the grand prix, I’ve got 1,200 people, they had booked their week to work for us, and when you move the date six weeks before, they have to change all their plans.”

“Then the spectators, obviously. Everybody has booked his plane, train, accommodation or whatever, and they had to change everything again. So it’s been a challenge.”

“We moved the date earlier by one week on F1’s request and we lost 20% of the spectators, but the tickets have been re-sold straight away.”

Boullier also gives more details regarding the audience capacity.

“In France normally you cannot have more than 5,000 spectators per event. Because of the specific design or layout of the Paul Ricard track, which is obviously very big, we can have three bubbles that are completely independent.”

“We’ve been allowed to have 15,000 spectators, so three times 5,000. And every bubble is completely independent. They have their own access, their own parking. Nobody can cross the path of anyone.”

“It’s been a strange time for everybody. We are happy we can have a race, happy we have some spectators.”

“We’re going to be the first big event in France. There’s Roland Garros and the Cannes Festival, but with 15,000 spectators, this is the biggest so far. So it’s good to be back.”

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