The Rome E-Prix is the latest main motorsports event to be cancelled in light of the growing COVID-19 (Coronavirus) epidemic.
On Friday, the ABB FIA Formula E Championship confirmed that the first European Formula E race will not take place, despite its original date for April 4 (in a month’s time).
Italy has been hard-hit by the outbreak, and the government has passed a law dictating that all sport played in the country must be played behind closed doors until April 3.
The government ruled that the close proximity of the crowds and spectators posed too much of a risk, thus cancelling the race for precautionary measures.
Formula E executives considered hosting the Rome E-Prix without a crowd, but have dismissed this idea due to the complexity of closing-off part of the city centre for the race.
In a statement released by Formula E, they have confirmed looking for a replacement date for the race.
“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.”
This is the second Formula E race to face cancellation, along with the Sanya E-Prix that was meant to take place on March 21.
Despite a six-week long gap until the next race on the calendar, the Paris E-Prix, it is likely that many more will also face cancellation in respect of the crowds of spectators that will be there.
Solutions that are being discussed include using purpose-built race tracks or other street circuits to host double-header races; this includes the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, the host of the annual Formula E pre-season test.