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Early cancellation of Classic TT and Manx GP taken 'to provide clarity'

 

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The cancellation of the races is a body blow for the Isle of Man from a commercial perspective with both main events in 2020 now off the menu

The cancellation of the races is a body blow for the Isle of Man from a commercial perspective with both main events in 2020 now off the menu

The cancellation of the races is a body blow for the Isle of Man from a commercial perspective with both main events in 2020 now off the menu

The Isle of Man government and Manx Motorcycle Club, the organisers of the Classic TT and Manx Grand Prix, have taken the joint decision to cancel this year's races which were due to take place between August 22 and September 4.

The cancellation of both events came following consultation between the Department of Enterprise and race organisers the Manx Motorcycle Club, taking into account emergency measures - including current border controls and travel restrictions - which are the result of the global Covid-19 pandemic.

This means there will be no racing around the famous Mountain Circuit this year, the event joining the cancellation of all the Irish road races, the Southern 100 and pre and post-TT race meetings around the Billown Circuit also on the Island.

Laurence Skelly MHK, Minister for Enterprise, announced the decision yesterday when he said: "This is obviously a conclusion that we didn't want to reach, but unfortunately when all the factors and advice were considered we felt that it was important to make an early decision to provide clarity and certainty to race officials, fans and sponsors, as well as competitors themselves.

"Despite the event being four months away we cannot predict the global position, but there is sufficient uncertainty and therefore making an early decision is the only responsible thing to do.

"We also want to reassure the island's residents that their health and well-being remains our No.1 priority and focus in this ongoing situation and furthermore it isn't appropriate to potentially place additional demands onto our hard-working medical and hospital staff by running the events this year."

There were other logistical factors taken into consideration, such as the number of key personnel including marshals and medical staff - many of whom live off the Isle of Man - and whether course builders and infrastructure equipment would be able to arrive in good time.

The cancellation of the races is a real body blow for the Isle of Man from a commercial perspective with both main events in 2020 now off the menu.

But, with the decision to cancel made early, all eyes can now turn to 2021 and the world-famous race meetings hopefully returning to the calendar and roaring into life once again.

Belfast Telegraph