MotoGP’s Japanese Grand Prix has been cancelled, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, citing continued uncertainty regarding travel arrangements, and an inability to reschedule in the winter months.
The event was due to be held on October 16 to 18 at the Honda-owned Motegi Circuit.
The President of event promoter Mobilityland Corporation, Kaoru Tanaka, cited the “unpredictable situations in Japan and Europe” and “the expected extension of the international travel ban.”
“As a result of our discussions with [MotoGP Promoter] Dorna Sports we agreed that we have no choice but to cancel the Japanese GP in order to complete the season.”
It is the first time the Japanese Grand Prix has not featured on motorcycling’s premier class calendar since 1986.
Formula 1’s Japanese Grand Prix is due to be held at Suzuka on October 9 to 11.
Mobilityland Corporation is the promoter for both Formula 1 and MotoGP in Japan.
While it ostensibly raises fresh doubts over Formula 1’s Japanese Grand Prix, Liberty Media remains optimistic of finishing its European campaign in early September, before heading overseas.
A partial calendar is expected to be released in the early stages of this week.
Dorna Sports is adopting a different tactic and will only race in Europe until mid-November.
It was concluded that racing in Japan – home to Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki – after that date was not viable.
“The MotoGP family is working very hard to be able to re-start the racing season and hold as many events as possible, and in the safest way possible,” said Dorna’s CEO Carmelo Ezpeleta.
“For this reason, the FIM and Dorna, in consultation with IRTA and MSMA, have decided that, until mid-November, MotoGP will remain in Europe to do as many European MotoGP events as we are able to.
“Therefore, overseas events, if at all possible, should be scheduled after mid-November – which would be too late in the year for the Grand Prix of Japan to be held.”