A start in July is optimistic – MotoGP boss

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The 2020 MotoGP season can commence in Europe at the end of July or at the beginning of August at the earliest, says Dorna Sports CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta.

The MotoGP has also been hard by the coronavirus pandemic as the sport has been postponed or cancelled the first eight rounds of the 2020 season. Although the Moto2 and Moto3 field was able to start racing in Qatar, the MotoGP is yet to complete a single grand prix this year.

Following the delay of the season, the Brno round, scheduled for 9 August, is set to kick off the 2020 championship. As the majority of MotoGP, including drivers, teams, and the Commercial Rights Holder, is based in Italy and Spain, the two countries that have been hit by the COVID-19 pandemic the most in Europe, the Promoter faces a range of difficulties to solve in terms of travel restrictions.

When asked by BT Sport, Expeleta said that a start at the end of July is the earliest the 2020 MotoGP season can kick off.

“We have seen different scenarios and the most optimistic is to start in the end of July. Then it will depend on the situation but we will need to take care of two things; one is any individual countries that can allow us to do it when the doors are open and the second is the possibility of traveling from one country to another.

The Spaniard said that the 2020 championship could see the field contesting first in Europe with the opening race taking place in July or August. Depending on the travel restrictions, the sport could visit further venues in Autumn.

“This is the best-possible scenario and every day I am thinking how it will be possible. Maybe making two consecutive events in the same circuit and then move to another. In Europe we can move by car and then it is more possible. The scenario we are looking at right now is to start in July and finish by November.”

Ezpeleta confirmed that should races take place in the near future, they could be staged behind closed doors. After claiming that only a vaccine can enable promoters to hold races with spectators, the Barcelona-born continues to believe that ’ghost’ grands prix are MotoGP’s best chance to get its season up and running.

“We consider the most likely scenario right now is without spectators because we don’t think it will be possible unfortunately, unless there is a vaccine or whatever is possible. It will be difficult to have spectators otherwise. We are considering which circuits are available to organise races without spectators,” he said.