Due to strict social distancing measures, border restrictions, contact tracing and quarantines, Australia has fared better than most during the global pandemic. Despite recording fewer than 31,000 cases of COVID-19, the emerging Delta variant recently forced local authorities to lock down Sydney and New South Wales (NSW) on June 26, 2021.
As the coronavirus continues to evolve, the MotoGP calendar has also had to evolve. Due to “travel complications and logistical restrictions”, Australian authorities cannot guarantee the viability of the Philip Island tour. Unfortunately, MotoGP officials will have to cancel the Australian Grand Prix for the second year in a row, replacing the iconic circuit with a second trip to Portimao, Portugal on November 7, 2021.
âWe are terribly disappointed that for the second year in a row, MotoGP fans do not see the best riders in the world compete on the magnificent Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit, notably Australians Jack Miller in the MotoGP category and Remy Gardner. , who currently runs the Moto2 World Championship, âcommented Paul Little, President of Australian Grand Prix Corporation. “We are also disappointed for our staff, suppliers and partners, as well as the community of Phillip Island and the associated tourism industry which relies on the economic impetus that accompanies the organization of the event.”
Instead, the MotoGP caravan will return to the Algarve International Circuit for the penultimate round of the 2021 season. However, the organizers had to play musical chairs to enter a Portuguese second round. With the Australian GP releasing the October 24, 2021 slot, the Malaysian Grand Prix will move until that date. The Algarve Grand Prix will take place two weeks later, on November 7, 2021.
MotoGP had already traveled to Portimao for the third round of the 2021 campaign. Current championship leader Fabio Quartararo claimed his second victory of the season, finishing almost five seconds ahead of Ducati’s Pecco Bagnaia and the champion in title Joan Mir. Of course, conditions and circumstances will differ from the race on April 18, 2021. Philip Island may be one of the fan favorites on the MotoGP calendar, but the racing series will have to continue to adapt to the global pandemic.
âAll of us riders are really disappointed that we can’t race at Phillip Island again this year – it’s a really tough thing for everyone, but we understand the situation and it’s the right decision,â admits Ducati rider Jack Miller. âEveryone in the paddock loves coming to Australia and I’m always proud of my home country when we host MotoGP because everyone loves this track and this event so much. So let’s keep our fingers crossed, things can change for 2022 and we can ride one of the best tracks in the world and in front of the awesome fans there. “