Formula E forced to postpone Rome E-Prix amid coronavirus threat
Saturday 7th March, 2020 - 8:01am
ABB FIA Formula E Championship organisers have postponed the forthcoming Rome E-Prix due to government sanctions enforced amid the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.
The capital city of Italy was set to host the sixth round of the 2019/20 season on April 4. However, the decision has been made to postpone it with hopes to reschedule the race.
The postponement comes off the back of a decision by the Italian government to have events take place behind closed doors until April 3.
While the race is slated for a day after that cutoff, pre-event shakedown takes place on the day prior.
The next round of the championship will instead take place in France for the Paris E-Prix on April 18.
The Rome race is the second round to have been affected by the COVID-19 flu strain. The Sanya E-Prix in China was initially supposed to be held on March 21.
Several more rounds of the championship are thought to be at risk with races in South Korea and Indonesia likely to be impacted.
The Rome E-Prix may be replaced, however, with reports that a race could be held in Valencia at Circuit Ricardo Tormo or possibly Marrakesh for a second time.
The outbreak is reportedly responsible for 3,500 deaths to date and nearly 100,000 cases confirmed globally.
Formula E is the second high profile championship to be affected by the outbreak. Already MotoGP has cancelled its first round in Qatar, which was supposed to take place this weekend.
Read the full ABB FIA Formula E Championship statement below:
As a consequence of the ongoing health emergency in Italy and according to the provisions set out in the ministerial decree concerning measures to counteract and contain the spread of COVID-19 in the country – which includes sporting events with large crowds and spectators in close proximity – it will no longer be possible to stage the Rome E-Prix on April 4, 2020.
Formula E, in agreement with the relevant authorities in Rome, EUR S.p.A and together with the FIA and Automobile Club d’Italia (ACI), will work closely with championship partners and stakeholders in order to assess and review alternative options to postpone the Rome E-Prix to a later date once restrictions have been lifted.
All ticket holders will be contacted through the appropriate channels in the coming days.