Monaco Grand Prix 2021: Why is practice held on a Thursday?

moanco grand prix

Formula 1 heads back to Monaco this weekend as the sport makes its return to the streets of Monte-Carlo for the first time since it was cancelled in 2020.

The race was one of several early events in 2020 that fell foul of the pandemic but that is in the past, now, and we can look forward to heading back to one of the most iconic places to go racing this weekend.

It all kicks off on Thursday, too, with practice but why is that the case when every other Grand Prix starts its race weekend on a Friday? Read on to find out exactly why…

The tradition of F1 starting on a Thursday in Monaco is down to the fact that the race was first held over the weekend around Ascension Day which, in the principality, sparked a bank holiday on the Friday – meaning the racing action started a day before.

In more contemporary times, the importance of the day has waned somewhat but the sport has opted to keep with the Thursday kick-off for practical reasons.

monaco grand prix

Over the course of the weekend, the streets are naturally shut for the cars to take to the track and, of course, that presents unique challenges to businesses.

The Friday is kept as a racing-free day, then, to allow stocks to be replenished and to allow residents to move around Monte-Carlo once more, rather than bringing things to a halt for three days straight in the principality.

hamilton monaco

It’s a quirk of the sport, but it’s one that’s here to stay.

You can find all of the latest Formula 1 news, results and standings right here at GiveMeSport.

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