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Sixteen Grands Prix still possible, say MotoGP™ chiefs

Friday, 8 May 2020

Twenty Grands Prix were initially scheduled for 2020.

MotoGP™ organisers Dorna Sports are hopeful of seeing a calendar of up to 16 races in the 2020 season after plans for a Spanish double-header were confirmed.

It has been proposed to the Spanish government that the Jerez circuit could host two races in July as the sport attempts to get back on track amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Twenty Grands Prix were initially scheduled for 2020, yet Dorna Sports chief executive Carmelo Ezpeleta has previously spoken of targeting just 10 races due to the global crisis.

Ezpeleta was slightly more optimistic speaking after news of the Jerez proposal, however, promising a clearer picture in a month's time.

Asked if 16 events could still go ahead, with four already cancelled, he told Cambia el Mapa: "If there can be some outside of Europe, yes. We are preparing for between 12 and 16 races.

"The procedure that we have had to do with Spain, we have to do with the other countries.

"At the beginning of June, I believe it will be possible to have a complete calendar of the races in Europe and, in theory, what could happen outside of Europe."

Ezpeleta explained the procedure MotoGP™ will use in Spain, with riders to be tested for COVID-19 before arriving in the country.

"We're working in accordance with the current conditions to be able to do it in the near future," he said.

"I hope that from now to July the measures don't get any worse but get better.

"The plan right now, as it stands, is that those outside of Europe would have to come to Europe at least 14 days before the Grand Prix and stay in Europe.

"Then, all the teams, including the Europeans, will have to do a test before leaving their countries, no later than four days before they arrive at the first Grand Prix, which will be in Spain.

"At that point, they will come with their certified test that says four days ago they were without coronavirus and, then when they arrive at the circuit, we will do another test.

"After that, each day we'll have a team with [hospital group] Quiron who will ensure that people are showing no symptoms and we will take everybody's temperature.

"Then there will be a protocol put in place should something happen and how we'll deal with it."