Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen react to cancelled Imola GP

The Formula 1 paddock has come out in support of the decision to cancel this weekend’s Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, offering their support to those affected.

The 2023 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix has been cancelled this week amid a devastating series of floods in the region following torrential downpours.

The decision was taken over fears of the safety of drivers and spectators, as well as concerns about taking resources away from fighting the floods to hold the event.

Five people have been confirmed dead amid the ongoing situation, with fear that the Santerno River could be on the brink of bursting its banks next to the track.

Despite being disappointed about letting down the fans by not being able to race this weekend, drivers and teams have backed Formula 1 over the cancellation, accepting that it’s the right move given the circumstances.

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“Safety and help for the people who really need it is the most important thing. Care has to go there first. So it seems only logical to me that we will not race at times like this,” Max Verstappen told De Telegraaf.

“All my thoughts and prays with the people in the Italian region of Emilia Romagna. We’re not racing there this weekend, but hopefully we can get back soon. Please stay safe!” Sergio Perez added on Twitter.

Lewis Hamilton paid tribute to the emergency services during this challenging time with a post on Instagram: “Thoughts are with those affected by this tragedy and the amazing emergency services working on the ground.”

“Sorry for the fans that this weekend’s race has been cancelled but the safety of everyone involved always has to come first,” Mercedes driver George Russell said.

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“I love racing, but the safety of everyone else is more important. Sorry to all the fans, we’ll be back Imola, stay safe,” McLaren’s Lando Norris added.

“Race weekend in Imola is unfortunately canceled but way more important now: really hope all the people who live in the Emilia-Romagna region stay safe in the next few days,” Haas driver Nico Hulkenberg stated.

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Imola had been shaping up to be an exciting event for drivers and fans, with teams set to unveil a string of upgrades at the Italian circuit.

With Imola cancelled, fans will have to wait for drivers to travel to the iconic Monaco street track next week to enjoy wheel-to-wheel action.

Sergio Perez will be hoping for similar success to last year, where he drove to victory in part thanks to a poor strategy call from Ferrari that saw Charles Leclerc throw away the lead.