New Date For The 43rd Edition of The Suzuka 8 Hours
Following Japan’s declaration of a nationwide state of emergency to combat the Covid-19 pandemic, the Suzuka 8 Hours race has been postponed to 1 November 2020. The iconic race – the grand finale of the FIM Endurance World Championship since the 2016/2017 season – will once again feature as the deciding race of the 2019/2020 season.
The FIM-International Motorcycling Federation, FIM EWC promoter Eurosport Events and Mobilityland, organizer of the Suzuka 8 Hours, have decided to postpone the race, initially scheduled to be held on 19 July 2020, to a new date: Sunday 1 November. With border entry restrictions currently in effect in Japan making it impossible for Suzuka to host teams and riders from countries affected by a coronavirus, the race has been postponed to later in the year.
Historically held in summer, ever since the first edition in 1978, the Suzuka 8 Hours will take place for the very first time in Autumn in 2020. In close collaboration with race organizer Mobilityland, the iconic Japanese race was promoted to the status of FIM EWC grand finale in 2017.
As the FIM EWC season final event, the 8-hour race will benefit from the bonus of 150% of the points.
The FIM, Eurosport Events, and the various race organizers have together restructured the ongoing season calendar to ensure the number of races initially scheduled in the championship takes place. The 2019-2020 season will, therefore, continue with the 24 Heures Motos (29 and 30 August 2020) followed by the Bol d’Or (19 and 20 September), and conclude with the FIM EWC grand finale at Suzuka on 1 November.
François Ribeiro, Head of Eurosport Events
“The global health crisis, the logistical constraints resulting from Japan’s entry restrictions and our priority to protect the health of everyone involved in the FIM EWC, have made it necessary to postpone the Suzuka 8 Hours. Praise is due to Mobilityland for adapting the Suzuka calendar to ensure that this major race in the championship remains Japan’s biggest celebration for motorcycling fans. To help teams with their logistics requirements in the opening phase of the 2020-2021 FIM EWC season, we will push back the date of the 8 Hours of Sepang to January if necessary, just ahead of the customary SBK/GP pre-a tests on the circuit.”
Kaoru Tanaka, President of Mobilityland Corporation
“We had been preparing for the ‘Coca-Cola’ Suzuka 8 Hours Endurance Road Race to be held in July, but have decided to postpone it in consideration of the current situation in which there is prohibition of large-scale events that attract large numbers of people and restriction of travel is expected to continue to increase in European countries. We ask for the kind understanding of all the fans who were looking forward to attending the Suzuka 8 Hours for this unavoidable postponement and of all the other stakeholders involved in this race event. We will make due preparations so that we can welcome the start of the event on November 1st together with all the fans and stakeholders involved in this event.”
Jorge Viegas, FIM President
“Who would have ever imagined that the 8 Hours of Suzuka would have to be postponed just a few weeks ago? However, we must keep strong and do whatever is in our power to return to racing, as soon as possible, without taking any unnecessary risks. I am sure that the faithful spectators of Suzuka will enjoy a great show again and that this iconic race will retain its special place in the FIM Endurance World Championship. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the efforts of the Japanese Motorcycling Federation (MFJ), Mobilityland Corporation and of course Eurosport Events!”