There is no denying that everybody wants to get back to business be it the business of industry or the business of sport. Baseball wants to get on the field to start the season, basketball and hockey want to finish their seasons. NASCAR was recently back on the track without fans in the stands. Other race series also want back on the grid. American Flat Track has announced the 2020 season will commence in July and consist of 18 rounds, of which not the all the venues have been announce while the state in which they will theoretically be held has been.
The challenge becomes keeping both fans and spectators happy and healthy. It will not be business as usual. What does it take to attend a race and will the protocols become a template for other race series? Well here are the guidelines that the Flat Track management team have handed down prior to the July 17th launch in Florida with the goal of strict preventative measures and minimizing contact:
- Reduction in ticket availability to conform with state and local guidelines for sporting events
- Reserved seating areas to include buffer zones to provide ample space between fans
- Fans entering the venue will be provided with complimentary facial coverings
- Enhanced sanitation and disinfection protocols with frequent cleaning throughout the facility
- Enhancements to mobile ticketing and elimination of printed tickets
- Cashless, contactless transactions for concessions and merchandise
- Regular medical screening of staff and competitors
There will also be carry through to fan access to the riders as there will be no fan walk, autograph sessions or paddock access.
While restrictive it does sound better than no racing at all. Whether it will work, whether all fans will cooperate in keeping the venues safe remains to be seen. American Flat Track acknowledges that the season is a work in progress and given a changing environment or an uptick in COVID cases, the season schedule could change again.
More info is available at http://www.americanflattrack.com .
So far here is how the schedule stands:
Updated 2020 AMA Flat Track Schedule*:
1. July 17 (Fri): Volusia Half-Mile I – Volusia Speedway Park, Barberville, FL
2. July 18 (Sat): Volusia Half-Mile II – Volusia Speedway Park, Barberville, FL
3. July 31 (Fri): Lima Half-Mile I – Allen County Fairgrounds, Lima, OH
4. August 1 (Sat): Lima Half-Mile II – Allen County Fairgrounds, Lima, OH
5. August 28 (Fri): TBA, Northeast U.S.
6. August 29 (Sat): TBA, Northeast U.S.
7. September 5 (Sat): Springfield Mile I** – Illinois State Fairgrounds – Springfield, IL
8. September 6 (Sun): Springfield Mile II – Illinois State Fairgrounds – Springfield, IL
9. September 11 (Fri):Williams Grove Half-Mile I – Williams Grove Speedway – Mechanicsburg, PA
10. September 12 (Sat): Williams Grove Half-Mile II – Williams Grove Speedway – Mechanicsburg, PA
11. September 25 (Fri): TBA, TX
12. September 26 (Sat): TBA, TX
13. October 2 (Fri): Atlanta Short Track I – Dixie Speedway – Woodstock, GA
14. October 3 (Sat): Atlanta Short Track II – Dixie Speedway – Woodstock, GA
15. October 9 (Fri): TBA, NC
16. October 10 (Sat): TBA, NC
17. October 15 (Thu): AFT Season Finale I – Daytona Beach, FL
18. October 16 (Fri): AFT Season Finale II – Daytona Beach, FL