The ongoing fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic continues to reshuffle the 2021 MotoGP calendar. This morning came news that the Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island has been canceled for 2021, with an extra round at Portimao added before Valencia to take its place.
The news had been widely anticipated, as Australia continues to maintain a strict border policy, making staging international sporting events almost impossible. The dropping of Phillip Island means that the Sepang race has been moved a week earlier, to October 24th, and an additional round added at Algarve International Circuit in Portimão on November 7th, a week before the final round in Valencia.
It seems unlikely (though not impossible) that this will be the final calendar change of the season. International travel remains precarious, and national restrictions are being lifted and reintroduced in various countries around the world as the Delta variant outbreak gathers pace, outpacing the rate of vaccination, temporarily at least.
The revised 2021 MotoGP Calendar appears below:
|28 March||Qatar*||Losail International Circuit|
|4 April||Qatar*||Losail International Circuit|
|18 April||Portugal||Algarve International Circuit|
|02 May||Spain||Circuito de Jerez – Ángel Nieto|
|16 May||France||Le Mans|
|30 May||Italy||Autodromo del Mugello|
|06 June||Catalunya||Barcelona - Catalunya|
|20 June||Netherlands||TT Circuit Assen|
|8 August||Styria||Red Bull Ring-Spielberg|
|15 August||Austria||Red Bull Ring-Spielberg|
|29 August||Great Britain||Silverstone|
|12 September||Aragón||MotorLand Aragón|
|19 September||San Marino e della Riviera di Rimini||Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli|
|03 October||Americas||Circuit of the Americas|
|17 October||Thailand||Chang International Circuit|
|24 October||Malaysia||Sepang International Circuit|
|7 November||Algarve||Algarve International Circuit|
|14 November||Comunitat Valenciana||Comunitat Valenciana-Ricardo Tormo|
|Postponed Grands Prix to be rescheduled subject to the pandemic:|
|República Argentina||Termas de Río Hondo|
|Reserve Grand Prix Venues:|
|Indonesia**||Mandalika International Street Circuit|
* Evening Race
** Subject to Homologation
There will be a maximum of 20 events in the 2021 season. All dates, events and the attendance of spectators are subject to the evolution of the pandemic and the approval of the corresponding Governments and authorities.
The press release from the FIM appears below:
Australian GP cancelled, Algarve GP added and Malaysian GP brought forward one week
The FIM, IRTA and Dorna Sports regret to announce the cancellation of the Red Bull Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix. The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and resulting travel complications and logistical restrictions mean it has not been possible to confirm the viability of the event at this time, and it will therefore not feature on the 2021 calendar. The FIM MotoGP™ World Championship looks forward to returning to race in front of the Australian fans at the spectacular Phillip Island Grand Prix circuit in 2022. The 2021 Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix has therefore been brought forward and will take place a week earlier than previously scheduled, from the 22nd to the 24th of October – the weekend immediately following the rescheduled OR Grand Prix of Thailand.
In addition, the FIM, IRTA and Dorna Sports are delighted to confirm the addition of the Grande Premio do Algarve to the 2021 FIM MotoGP™ World Championship calendar. MotoGP™ will return to Portimão from the 5th to the 7th of November, the week preceding the Gran Premio Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana, as the iconic Autodromo do Algarve welcomes MotoGP™ back for a second Grand Prix this season.