24 Hours of Le Mans to be run behind closed doors
The Automobile Club de l’Ouest has announced that despite earlier plans to allow limited numbers of fans to attend, the 2020 running of the Le Mans 24 Hours will, in fact, take place behind closed doors.
The ACO and the Sarthe Prefecture had considered various solutions to enable at least some fans to attend the 88th running of the event, which has already been delayed from its usual mid-June dates to the end of September. However, the ongoing pandemic, and the uncertainty surrounding the development of the situation means that it was unanimously decided to run the delayed event without any spectator attendance at all.
“The 88th 24 Hours of Le Mans will go down in the annals of history as, sadly, the world’s greatest endurance race will be run this year with no spectators trackside,” commented ACO president Pierre Fillon. “Over the last few weeks, we have looked at many ways in which we could hold our event in September with fans present, albeit in limited numbers. However, given the constraints involved in organising a festival-scale event over several days in the current situation, we have opted with the local government authorities to hold the race behind closed doors.
“There were still too many question marks regarding health and safety. We know that our fans will be as disappointed as we are by this decision but, with public health in the balance, it really wasn’t a difficult call to make. You don’t compromise where safety is concerned. Fans will not miss out altogether. They may not be at Le Mans, but our media teams and service providers will bring Le Mans to them! We are sure that we can count on everyone’s support and understanding at this time.”