The MotoGP races in Germany, the Netherlands and Finland in June and July have been cancelled, the International Motorcycling Federation (FIM) and promoter Dorna Sports announced on Wednesday.
“The ongoing coronavirus outbreak has obliged the cancellation of all three events,” they said in a joint statement.
The German Grand Prix was scheduled from June 19-21 at the Sachsenring and the Dutch MotoGP from June 26-28 at Assen, the only circuit to have hosted a motorcycle grand prix every year since the championship began in 1949.
The Finnish race was scheduled to be held for the first time at the brand new KymiRing from July 10-12.
All three countries have prohibited large gatherings to combat the spread of coronavirus.
“It is with great sadness that we announce the cancellation of these three important Grands Prix,” Dorna’s CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta said in a statement. “We very much look forward to returning to the Sachsenring and the TT Circuit Assen in 2021, and eagerly await the Grand Prix debut of the new KymiRing next season.”
The first eight rounds of the 2020 season had already been cancelled or postponed.
While the next race still standing on the calendar is the GP of the Czech Republic at Brno on August 9, Ezpeleta on Monday suggested trying to start the season at the end of July in Europe, adding that the most likely scenario was a race without spectators.
He said “the most important thing” was to “organise races and broadcast them on television”.
Later Wednesday, he admitted: “In the worst case, if it’s not possible to travel outside of Europe, we’ll at least keep a Championship of least 10 to 12 races between the end of July and the end of November.”
Ezpeleta also said that the numbers of people allowed to be in the paddock will be restricted.
For a MotoGP factory team, the limit will be 40, for satellite or independent teams in the elite class it will be 25.
In Moto2, the number will be 20 while a maximum of 15 will be allowed for Moto3.
“Then there will be, of course, all the people who produce the television signal; all this crew, then the minimum number of people from Dorna who are in charge of race organisation,” he added. “This will give us an average of around 1600 people. This is the possibility to control the MotoGP family. Unfortunately at the moment there will be no media and no TV.”
“Maybe, but not sure, maybe some photographers to supply images to everybody.”