The European Le Mans Series has postponed the first two rounds of its 2020 season in response to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
The 4 Hours of Barcelona, which was scheduled to take place on Apr. 5, and the 4 Hours of Monza on May. 10 are set to be rescheduled to new dates later in the year.
Additionally, this month’s pre-season Prologue test at Barcelona will not go ahead.
Spain and Italy, where the Barcelona and Monza circuits are located, are statistically the two-worst affected European countries at this stage of the global outbreak.
According to the latest World Health Organization data, there have been 15,113 confirmed cases of the COVID-19 strain in Italy, of which 1,016 have resulted in deaths.
Spain, meanwhile, has recorded almost 3,000 cases and 84 deaths as of Friday, Mar. 13.
“This decision was not made lightly but is the appropriate and responsible decision,” said ELMS CEO Gerard Neveu.
“We had no other choice than to postpone our events. The welfare of our teams, members of the paddock and race fans has to remain our priority.
“We are working on a revised calendar and will communicate that in the next few days.”
The next ELMS event on the schedule is the 4 Hours of Le Castellet in July, although many ELMS teams are also set to compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans on June 13-14.