Coronavirus concerns prompts cancellation of Sanya ePrix

by Nathan Hine
Jean-Eric Vergne at 2019 Sanya ePrix

2020 Sanya ePrix has been cancelled after World Health Organisation declared coronavirus a ‘global emergency’.

So far, the death toll for the virus has reached 300, with 14,000 have been infected since the last month’s outbreak in the city of Wuhan.

The race was scheduled to take place on March 21 on the island of Hainan and was due to be the only visit in the 2019-20 ABB FIA Formula E Championship to China. This follows mass civil unrest in Hong Kong last Autumn which caused the 2020 race in the lone star state to be called off even before the season got underway.

A statement released by the all-electric single-seater racing series says: “Formula E has taken the necessary measures to ensure the health and safety of its travelling staff, championship participants and spectators, which remains of paramount importance.”

“We are working closely with our regional partner and the local authorities in Hainan Province and Sanya Municipal Government, to continue monitoring the situation as it develops. All parties will take the appropriate amount of time to study the viability of potential alternative dates should the situation improve.”

But the cancellation now means that there will be another lengthy gap on the race schedule between the Marrakesh ePrix on February 29 and the race on the strrets of Rome on April 4.

The race will take place 1000 miles from the city of Wuhan, from where the norovirus outbreak originated.

Last week, the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office warned against all non-essential travel to mainland China as the virus continues to spread as it was confirmed one man from the Phillipines died from the virus this morning.

This decision from Formula E now raised questions about whether the Chinese GP which is due to be held at the Shanghai International Circuit on April 17-19 will now go ahead.

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