Dorna would be “delighted” with 10-race MotoGP season
Dorna Sports CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta admits he’d be “delighted” if MotoGP could run a 10-round 2020 season once the worst of the coronavirus pandemic has subsided.
The current MotoGP campaign is on indefinite hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the first six races of the current calendar either cancelled or postponed, with May’s Italian GP and the following Catalunya race at the start of June highly likely to follow suit.
Since the postponement of the Jerez and Le Mans races in the last week, Dorna and governing body the FIM have stopped issuing updated calendars.
Contractually, there has to be 13 races in a season for it to be deemed a championship – though Ezpeleta points out that this is under “normal conditions”.
As the current coronavirus situation is unprecedented, this stipulation is now null.
“The contract says that we have to do a minimum of 13 races under normal conditions, and that is not the case,” Ezpeleta told Spanish outlet La Razon.
“According to the FIM, we will do what we can and when we can.
“What’s more, if we could have a championship of 10 [races] I would be delighted with the races.
“We are going to try to run more, but we were able to do 10 under these circumstances, it would mean that humanity is already well, which is the most important thing.
“The races are now in the background.”
With the confirmed number of COVID-19 cases worldwide breaching the one million mark in recent days, and the death toll exceeding 50,000 as many places get set to enter the peak period of the virus, more major sporting events have been canned.
Ezpeleta admits MotoGP will have to contemplate the fact its 2020 season could be cancelled altogether, but stresses there is “still time” to fit in races.
“In the worst of our dreams, we [have] thought [total cancellation is possible],” he added.
“It would have to be contemplated, but there is still time.
“Of course, it could be that it didn’t run and I hope not – not for the races – but for humanity [as it means the virus situation has worsened].”
Dorna and the FIM have previously mooted the idea of two-race weekends and running the season into January if needs be.
However, Ezpeleta has appeared to have backtracked on this stance in recent weeks.
Last week, Dorna also announced a financial aid package for all independent MotoGP teams, as well as the squads in Moto2 and Moto3 for the next three months in a bid to keep them afloat.
Gibernau: Jerez ’05 Rossi clash set bad precedent in MotoGP
Breaking down Dorna’s €9m MotoGP financial aid package