In order to maintain the number of events on the 2021 FIM Endurance World Championship calendar, the organizers of the Suzuka 8 Hours and the 12 Hours of Estoril, together with the FIM and Eurosport Events, have agreed to switch the scheduling of the two races.
As a result, the 12 Hours of Estoril in Portugal will now be held on Saturday 17 July, the week-end initially earmarked for the Japanese race.
The Suzuka 8 Hours has been rescheduled to Sunday 7 November when it will wrap up the 2021 season, with 150% points awarded for the final race.
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The extension of health and entry restrictions in Japan, which make it difficult for international teams and riders to be welcomed to the country, has made it necessary for this decision to be taken in the interests of ensuring that both races take place. By postponing the Suzuka 8 Hours to early November, it is hoped that there will be a relaxation of Japan’s rules by this time.
And by this summer, teams competing in the Endurance World Championship are expected to encounter fewer restrictions travelling to Portugal. The 12 Hours of Estoril, originally scheduled for 16 October, will now take place on Saturday 17 July at the venue close to Lisbon.
François Ribeiro, Head of Eurosport Events“We suggested to the organizers of the Suzuka 8 Hours and the 12 Hours of Estoril that they switch their dates for the good of the championship and to make it easier for teams to travel to Japan. In the coming months, it will still be hard to have a clear idea regarding travel management and public attendance at the circuits. The 2021 season will be an excellent one with an opening race at Le Mans and a grand finale at Suzuka to decide the title.”
Kaoru Tanaka, President and Representative Director of Mobilityland Corporation“We had been planning to hold the ‘Coca-Cola’ Suzuka 8 Hours Endurance Race in July, but due to the projected conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic and factors like the restrictions on travel, the decision was made to postpone the event to November. Regarding this change in scheduling, I want to extend my sincere thanks to the FIM, Eurosport Events, the MFJ and the various domestic circuits for their kind understanding. Our entire company is now working as one to complete preparations to ensure that the race can be held in November.”
Jorge Viegas, FIM President“I would like to thank all stakeholders who made this “swap” of dates between Estoril and Suzuka possible. This shows how strong the Motorcycle family is, not only in adapting to every obstacle that may arise, but also in demonstrating full solidarity between organisers, National Federations and, of course, the Promoter.”
Antonio Lima, President of Motor Clube do Estoril"After the success of the 2020 race, the Motor Club of Estoril was planning a Grand Finale for October at the end of the EWC 2021, however the global pandemic situation has already accustomed us to be prepared to adapt at every moment. At the request of Eurosport Events and FIM, we changed the date of the 12H Estoril Race to 17 July 2021, the initial date foreseen for the Suzuka 8H. Bearing in mind that the pandemic situation in Portugal is currently stable and controlled and we believe it will continue, we are already working to organize a great event in Estoril, where we hope to have the presence of the public and enthusiastically welcome all the teams, organization, officials and guests."
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