Dismay in the animal kingdom

Major upset for the groundhogs and cows as the venues in Canada and France are omitted from the F1 calendar for the 2009 season!

The cows on the lush pastures of Magny Cours will have some harsh words for the French organisers who have pulled out of the event for financial reasons. The quest for an alternative venue continues. Although the prospects for provincial ruminants are not looking good, better times may lie ahead for the rodents of France, as there is talk of building a new Grand Prix circuit at Euro Disney, Mickey Mouse's official residence on this side of the Atlantic.

The ubiquitous groundhogs on the Ile de Notre Dame in Montreal are meanwhile planning a riot. The noise generated by the annual F1 jamboree on their private island is something of an imposition, but at least it gives them the chance to get into the newspapers once a year and attract some prime time TV coverage. After all, these bundles of fur seem happy to wander onto the track and dodge out of the way as the cars come tearing round. Or is it actually the cars dodging the groundhogs?

Anyway, here is the race calendar as published by the FIA World Council on Wednesday – minus groundhogs and cows.

2009 FIA Formula One World Championship

29 March Australia
5 April Malaysia
19 April China
26 April Bahrain
10 May Spain
24 May Monaco
7 June Turkey
21 June Great Britain
12 July Germany
26 July Hungary
23 August Europe (Valencia)
30 August Belgium
13 September Italy
27 September Singapore
4 October Japan
18 October Brazil
1 November Abu Dhabi
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