PARIS: Formula One chiefs cancelled the China Grand Prix for a fourth straight year on Friday, citing continuing problems related to the Covid-19 pandemic. “Formula 1 can confirm, following dialogue with the promoter and relevant authorities, that the 2023 Chinese Grand Prix will not take place due to the ongoing difficulties presented by the COVID-19 situation,” read a statement on their website. “Formula 1 is assessing alternative options to replace the slot on the 2023 calendar and will provide an update on this in due course.” The last time the race was staged in Shanghai was in 2019. The decision comes at a time when cities across China further unwound Covid restrictions Friday, loosening testing and quarantine rules in the wake of nationwide protests calling for an end to lockdowns and greater political freedoms. Anger over China’s zero-Covid policy — which involves mass lockdowns, constant testing and quarantines even for people who are not infected — has sparked protests in major cities, including Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou.