Qatar’s MotoGP class cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns


THE MotoGP class at the 2020 Qatar MotoGP, this weekend has been cancelled following the mounting concerns over COVID-19 outbreak, especially among the Italian riders who will be competing in the premier class.

According to the statement issued by Dorna Sports, the holder of MotoGP’s exclusive commercial and television rights, the decision was reached between Dorna Sports, the International Road-Racing Teams Association (IRTA), and the International Automobile Association (FIM), due to the growing concerns over the COVID-19 which resulted in Qatar’s travel restrictions being brought into force.

“As of today, all passengers arriving at Doha on direct flights from Italy, or having been in Italy in the past two weeks, will be taken straight to quarantine for a minimum of fourteen days.

“Italy clearly plays a vital role in the championship and in the MotoGP class – both on track and off, and therefore the decision has been taken to cancel premier class competition,” the statement said.

Dorna Sports, however, announced that other races, including the Moto2 and Moto3 classes, will proceed as usual as the riders have already been in the Qatar capital, earlier this week for a three-days official test at the Losail International Circuit.

“The lightweight and intermediate classes will therefore compete in their season opener from March 6 to 8. The same will apply to the Idemitsu Asia Talent Cup, which will have two races during the Qatar Grand Prix as originally planned,” the statement said.

According to the international news reports, the Italian authorities have confirmed five more people died, bringing the death toll to 34.

Italian Civil Protection Agency chief Angelo Borrelli was quoted as saying that the number of people being infected in the country, rose by 50 per cent to 1,694 in just 24 hours.