Shortened MotoGP season to start 19 July at Jerez

<b>TESTING IN OZ:</b> The first day of the third MotoGP pre-season test has concluded with the reigning world champion Marc Marquez taking the top spot. <I>Image: Honda</i>
<b>TESTING IN OZ:</b> The first day of the third MotoGP pre-season test has concluded with the reigning world champion Marc Marquez taking the top spot. <I>Image: Honda</i>
  • Organisers pencil 19 July for start of MotoGP season
  • Minimum of 13 races, all in Europe
  • Eight races canceled so far due to coronavirus outbreak

The 2020 MotoGP season will start on 19 July in Spain following the coronavirus lockdown, with back-to-back races to be held at the Jerez circuit, organisers announced on Thursday.

There will be a minimum of 13 races in the season, all in Europe between July and November, with "possibly four more" outside the continent later in the year.

Whether or not fans can attend races will depend on each host country's coronavirus regulations.

"All dates, events and the eventual attendance of spectators are subject to the evolution of the pandemic and the approval of the corresponding governments and authorities," MotoGP said in a statement.

On Wednesday, the Italian Grand Prix at Mugello had become the eighth race of the season to be cancelled due to the Covid-19 outbreak.

The season was originally scheduled to start on 2 March in Qatar, but only the Moto2 and Moto3 events were raced.

The British race at Silverstone, the German Grand Prix at the Sachsenring and races in Japan, Australia, Finland and the Netherlands were all scrapped.

MotoGP organisers Dorna had been waiting for the Spanish government to give the green light for the races in Jerez to go ahead before releasing the revised schedule.

Spain will host seven races in total, with the Catalunya Grand Prix to go ahead in Barcelona on 27 September, while double-headers are also booked in at Aragon and in Valencia for October and November respectively.

The Czech Grand Prix will be the third race of the campaign on 9 August, before two races at Austria's Red Bull Ring and two more in Italy, at the track used for the San Marino Grand Prix.

Le Mans will host the French Grand Prix on 11 October.

Possible races in the United States, Thailand, Argentina and Malaysia will be confirmed by 31 July.

"We (want) to finish the season by 13 December... so we need to decide which of the races we will have outside Europe," said Dorna CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta.

"This is something we will put in the calendar as a proposal and decide on no later than the end of July."

Spanish star Marc Marquez will be bidding for his fifth straight top-class title and seventh in total.

"Revised 2020 calendar! Eager to come back to the circuits and start the action!" said Marquez on social media.

The Moto 2 and Moto 3 seasons will resume with the same calendar, while there will be seven MotoE races, including in France for the first time.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
Brought to you by
Voting Booth
Do you think Mercedes will return to form later in the 2022 F1 season after two poor races?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Yes, don't discredit them.
34% - 503 votes
Who cares, F1 is exciting again!
43% - 645 votes
No, it's Ferrari's turn to dominate again.
23% - 343 votes