After the Center for Disease Control recommended the suspension of large events and mass gatherings for the next eight weeks due to the Coronavirus pandemic, NASCAR has postponed activities until the Martinsville Speedway weekend on May 9.
The sanctioning body released the following statement on Monday afternoon:
"The health and safety of our fans, industry and the communities in which we race is our most important priority, so in accordance with recent CDC guidance, NASCAR is currently postponing all race events through May 3rd, with plans to return to racing in Martinsville. We appreciate the patience of our fans and we look forward to returning to the racetrack.
"We intend to hold all 36 races this season, with future rescheduling soon to be determined as we continue to monitor this situation closely with public health officials and medical experts. What is important now transcends the world of sports and our focus is on everyone’s safety and well-being as we navigate this challenging time together.”
The announcement comes after races at Atlanta Motor Speedway and Homestead-Miami Speedway were postponed. Texas Motor Speedway, originally scheduled for March 29, is on hold along with Bristol Motor Speedway, Richmond Raceway, Talladega Superspeedway and Dover International Speedway.
Following NASCAR’s update, four of the five race tracks impacted by Monday’s decision released information for fans and current ticket holders.
“Considering the circumstances that NASCAR had no choice but to postpone the race, we obviously support that because public safety comes first,” said Eddie Gossage, Texas Motor Speedway President and General Manager. “As soon as we have information on the rescheduled date, we will share it with our fans but we encourage them to hold on to their tickets and plan to join us for the rescheduled O’Reilly Auto Parts 500. It’s always the right time to do the right thing and we’re going to do right by our fans.”
From Bristol: “What truly makes Bristol Motor Speedway special is not only the exciting racing, but the incredible family reunion feel that exists when all of our fans, guests, community members and businesses come together for a race weekend,” said Jerry Caldwell, executive vice president and general manager of Bristol Motor Speedway. “That’s why I support NASCAR’s decision to postpone our NASCAR spring event to a later date. The health and safety of everyone who attends races at Bristol Motor Speedway is our top priority and this step has been taken so that everyone can follow the recommended guidelines as advised by government officials. Our thoughts and prayers are with all of those who have been affected by this pandemic. Once we have a confirmed rescheduled date, we will inform you as soon as possible. We thank you for your patience during this time and we look forward to having all of you here once again at the Last Great Colosseum.”
From Richmond: “As a sport and community, we are united in the best interests of the safety and well-being of our fans, competitors, stakeholders, and track personnel,” said Richmond President Dennis Bickmeier. “As this dynamic situation continues to evolve, we will continue to work closely with our federal, state, local, and public health officials. We look forward to brighter and healthier days ahead in the greater Richmond region when NASCAR returns to Richmond Raceway.”
And from Talladega: “We want to thank all of our loyal and devoted fans who were set to join us during our April race weekend,” said Talladega Superspeedway President Brian Crichton. “The health and safety of our guests, NASCAR stakeholders, employees and our community is our number one priority. We appreciate your patience and understanding during these unprecedented times and we look forward to having everyone back in the near future for the greatest racing on the planet.”
RacinBoys will continue to update readers as information becomes available.