Race called off “in view of the continued spread of coronavirus”
Paris: The Chinese Formula E Grand Prix on March 21 in Sanya has become the latest sports event to fall victim to the coronavirus, organisers announced on Sunday.
The race, first held last year, was called off “in view of the continued spread of coronavirus,” a Formula E statement announced.
It said the decision had been taken “after close consultation” with Hainan Province and government authorities in Sanya, the sport’s governing body the FIA and the Chinese motorsport federation.
The deadly coronavirus epidemic has played havoc with China’s sporting calendar.
All domestic football has been suspended and among the events either cancelled or postponed are the World Indoor athletics championships, Tokyo Olympics boxing and women’s basketball qualifiers and cycling’s Tour of Hainan.
Also cancelled are snooker’s China Open, badminton’s China Masters and golf’s LPGA Blue Bay tournament.
The Chinese Formula One Grand Prix, in Shanghai on April 19, is also at risk, with the FIA announcing on Thursday it was “monitoring the evolving situation”.
Since emerging out of the central Chinese city of Wuhan late last year, the coronavirus has killed 304 people and infected nearly 14,500 across China and reached 24 countries.
The Formula E statement noted: “Given the current growing health concerns and with the World Health Organisation declaring the coronavirus an international emergency, 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.”