Horner says Austrian grands prix will be 'blueprint for all other races'

Christian Horner has promised the season-opening showdowns at the home of the Austrian Grand Prix will prove "a blueprint for all other races to follow".

The delayed Formula One season is set to launch with grands prix on back-to-back weekends, the races at the Spielberg track billed for July 5 and July 12.

The races will be known as the Austrian Grand Prix and the Styrian Grand Prix. Styria is the Austrian region in which the track sits.

Horner, team principal of the Red Bull team, pointed to the work that has been carried out to ensure the circuit will be secure and ready to hold behind-closed-doors races amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Spielberg venue is also known as the Red Bull Ring, given it is owned by the energy drink manufacturer's co-owner Dietrich Mateschitz.

Horner said in a team statement: "Red Bull have pulled out all the stops to get the Austrian Grand Prix up and running, in order to support a safe start to the Formula One season.

"It's a fantastic venue and we are pleased to be starting our championship campaign at our home circuit. It has been a huge effort by all involved and the two events at the Red Bull Ring will be a blueprint for all other races to follow."

Horner spoke of talks involving Liberty Media, who are Formula One's promoters and its commercial arm, motorsport governing body the FIA, and local authorities.

"We all have our part to play in order to enforce the measures in place," Horner said.

Teams and all involved in the two races will face regular testing, and staff will be reduced in number to ensure there are as few people as possible at the grands prix.

After two weekends in Austria, each team will move on to Hungary for a July 19 race, before Silverstone in England stages grands prix on August 2 and August 9 - the British Grand Prix and the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix.

Spain, Belgium and Italy are also due to put on races, according to a new calendar released by Formula One organisers on Tuesday.

"With the first eight races of the calendar now confirmed we have some positive momentum," Horner said.

"As a race team and racers, we are excited to get going again and put on a show for our fans."