Motorsport events can officially restart in the United Kingdom from July 4 in line with an easing of lockdown rules by the British government.
Motorsport UK, the UK’s four-wheel motorsport governing body, has signalled that it will allow events to submit applications for permits from June 1, ahead of an anticipated return to action on July 4.
It follows ongoing positive dialogue with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport which has taken the decision to restart sporting events throughout the country as the UK continues to relax its lockdown rules.
Any resumption of motorsport is contingent on event organisers demonstrating that they can plan in accordance with the recently published, ‘Getting Back on Track’ guidelines of Motorsport UK, while respecting government guidance on social distancing.
“In March, Motorsport UK moved quickly and in line with government to suspend motorsport, while everyone’s priority was restricting the spread of this terrible disease and protecting the NHS,” commented David Richards, chairman of Motorsport UK.
“It is now right that, as government has set out plans to ease restrictions, we move in step and introduce the next stage of our phased restart. Unlike many sports, motorsport in the UK is an industry in itself, employing tens of thousands and contributing billions of pounds to the UK economy.
“We always said that, when the conditions were right, we would take a responsible decision to resume motorsport in order to sustain the sport, jobs and the economy.
“We have explained our plans to government and are fortunate that motorsport takes place outdoors over large controlled spaces.
“Our plan is that, subject to government advice and ongoing lifting of restrictions, motorsport will resume from 4th July. We are making this announcement now as event organisers, venues, preparation specialists, the supply chain, volunteer Marshals, Officials and Competitors all need time to put in place their plans.”
There will be a number of caveats for granting event permits, including a commitment by organisers that their events will be held behind closed doors, appropriate PPE requirements are met, and that each organiser must appoint a COVID-19 officer to ensure compliance with any relevant guidelines.
Furthermore, there will be a limit on the number of permits issued for July to 50% of those in the corresponding month of 2019, in order that there are sufficient volunteer Official and Marshal resources available to support the restart in a safe and responsible manner.
Motorsport UK will limit the type of events that can go ahead and won’t grant permits to any national or British championships for the month of July to reduce the potential for national and international travel – though FIA sanctioned events such as Formula 1, is exempt from this as it hopes to hold a British GP in late-July.