Formula 1 2020 Schedule: Spanish GP Start Time, TV Channel, Live Stream

The shortened Formula 1 season moves to Spain this weekend, when the threat posed by the novel coronavirus pandemic will be as much of a talking point as Lewis Hamilton's chances of returning to the top of the podium.

Over the last four weeks, Spain has reported a rapid increase in COVID-19 cases. This includes a worrying spike in Barcelona and the Catalonia region, where the race is held and which recorded over 5,100 new cases last week

Since the season got underway after a four-month delay in July, Formula 1 has adhered to strict rules to guarantee the safety of drivers and team members.

Racing Point driver Sergio Perez missed the last two races after contracting COVID-19, but the Mexican has fortunately proved to be an isolated case. His colleagues are confident the protocols implemented by the sport will ensure the weekend in Barcelona passes without issues.

"I stay at the track always so nothing changes for me," Hamilton was quoted as saying by BBC Sport.

"I stay in my bubble. I am only around a couple of people so I will get to the airport and go straight to my motorhome and stay at the track for four days, same as I have this weekend."

Red Bull's Max Verstappen echoed the Briton's approach.

"You minimize contact," he said.

"You stay in your bubble. I don't expect any trouble. It's not only in Spain there is corona. You just have to be careful."

Away from health concerns, the Spanish GP should offer more indications over whether Red Bull can consistently challenge Mercedes. The German giant dominated the first four events of the shortened season, with Valtteri Bottas taking the opener in Austria, before Hamilton won the next three races.

That streak, however, came to an abrupt end last week, when Red Bull made the most of Mercedes' struggle to get their tires to perform and Verstappen took the chequered flag in the 70th Anniversary GP at Silverstone, England.

The win saw the Dutchman overtake Bottas in second place in the drivers' standings, but Verstappen remains 30 points behind Hamilton, who is looking to win the Spanish GP for the fourth consecutive year on Sunday.

Whether the win at Silverstone is a stepping stone on Red Bull's path towards closing the gap with Mercedes or a simply the result of a series of favorable circumstances coming together at the right time remains to be seen, but Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said last week proved his team could take nothing for granted.

"I enjoy the situation because everyone said it would be a walk in the park for Mercedes and it wasn't a walk in the park," he said.

"We didn't have the quickest car and maybe not even the second quickest car."

Here's all you need to know ahead of Sunday.

When is the Spanish Grand Prix?

The sixth race of the shortened Formula 1 season gets underway at 3:10 p.m. local time (9:10 a.m. ET) on Sunday, August 16.

Where is the Spanish Grand Prix?

The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya hosts the sixth round of the 2020 World Championship.

Located in Montmelo, a municipality within the Barcelona metropolitan area, the track has been a staple of the Formula 1 calendar since it hosted its first GP in 1991.

Lewis Hamilton has won in Barcelona in the last three years and should he finish top of the podium on Sunday, he'd move within one win of Michael Schumacher's record of six wins at the circuit.

TV channel

The Spanish Grand Prix will be broadcast live by ESPN. Coverage of race day begins at 8 a.m. ET on Sunday, with the race scheduled to get underway just over an hour later.

Live stream

A live stream will be available via ESPN+ and via WatchESPN.com, as well as Sling TV and Hulu + Live TV.

Odds

According to Oddschecker, Lewis Hamilton is a 4/7 favorite to win on Sunday, followed by Mercedes' teammate Valtteri Bottas at 7/2 and Max Verstappen at 5/1.

Ferrari's Charles Leclerc, meanwhile, is a 40/1 outsider.

Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas, Formula One
Mercedes AMG F1 driver Valtteri Bottas driving the (77) leads teammate Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen driving the (33) Aston Martin Red Bull Racing RB16 during the F1 70th Anniversary Grand Prix at Silverstone on August 9 in Northampton, England. Bryn Lennon/Getty
Formula 1 2020 Schedule: Spanish GP Start Time, TV Channel, Live Stream | Sports