Formula E 2019/20 season temporarily suspended over coronavirus fears

Formula E

Formula E's season has been temporarily suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak

The 2020 Marrakesh ePrix

DPPI

Formula E has temporarily suspended the current season due to the spread of coronavirus.

It means that the Paris and Seoul ePrix, scheduled for April and May are both postponed while the series will reassess the viability of holding races later in the year.

The series has already been forced to cancel the Sanya and Jakarta ePrix, and postpone a race in Rome due to the outbreak.

As multiple countries begin to implement their own procedures to limit the spread of coronavirus, Formula E has introduced its own flag system based on safety of staging races, with March and April listed as red flags and May currently at yellow.

June and July are both currently listed as green and is the window the series is aiming to restart its season.

A statement released by Formula E said that the safety was “number one priority” and that it would continue to work with the FIA and local authorities in reworking its 2019/20 season.

“The decision, made in coordination with the relevant local authorities to temporarily freeze races held in highly-populated cities, was taken as the most responsible course of action, due to the continued spread of coronavirus and the World Health Organisation officially declaring COVID-19 a pandemic,” it said in a statement.

“With the well-being of staff, spectators and the entire championship workforce being the number one priority, precautionary measures put in place will restrict races from running during a set timeframe.

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“The series is implementing a flag system traditionally used in motorsport, to determine different phases and time windows where races could be rearranged or remain unaffected. Red representing no races, yellow keeping the opportunity open and green going ahead as planned.

“Months marked as red flags are March and April, with May currently categorised as a yellow flag and both June and July given the green flag, should the situation improve and stabilise.

“As a consequence of the suspension, it will no longer be possible to race in Paris and Seoul, or Jakarta as previously announced on the originally scheduled dates.

“Working in collaboration with the FIA and local authorities in each event location, Formula E will closely monitor the situation and evaluate options to organise and reschedule races following the temporary suspension.

Formula E chairman Alejandro Agag said that the suspension of the 2019/20 season was the only sensible decision to make with the coronavirus outbreak evolving daily.

“Right now is the time to take responsible actions and this is why we have decided to temporarily suspend the season and move forward with introducing measures to freeze races from taking place over the next two months,” he said.

“Motorsport plays a major part in our lives and it is important, but what is more important is the health and safety of our staff, fans and their families, as well as citizens in the cities we race.

“The ABB FIA Formula E Championship will be back in full force, once the ongoing health crisis and spread of COVID- 19 has subsided.”

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