INDIANAPOLIS — On Sunday, the CDC made another statement about the COVID-19 and gatherings inside of the United States. According to their updated guidelines, they’re urging that large events and mass gatherings should adhere to new rules which limits guests to less than 50 people for the next eight weeks.
“CDC, in accordance with its guidance for large events and mass gatherings, recommends that for the next 8 weeks, organizers (whether groups or individuals) cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more throughout the United States.
“Events of any size should only be continued if they can be carried out with adherence to guidelines for protecting vulnerable populations, hand hygiene and social distancing. When feasible, organizers could modify events to be virtual.”
So, what does that mean for racing? Well, eight weeks from this very moment is Sunday, May 10. Right now, only two NASCAR races have been called off, but if they adhere to these recommendations, then races at Texas (March 29), Bristol (Apr. 5), Richmond (Apr. 19), Talladega (Apr. 26), Dover (May 3) and Martinsville (May 9) will be affected.
That would put us to the All-Star race on May 16, which means the postponement or cancelation of eight races at the very least. That’s if they don’t extend this new initiative.
For the NTT IndyCar Series, they’ve already postponed St. Pete, Barber, Long Beach and COTA as they postponed their season through the end of April. If they adhere to this, the GMR Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway would move back too.
They’d open with the Indianapolis 500 at the end of May.
Granted, they could always run without fans, but there would still be more than 50 people at those tracks if you factor in race teams, media and officials.