The Automobile Club de l’Ouest, organizers of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, have announced the 2020 edition of the endurance race will be run without fans in attendance. The decision, wake with local health officials, comes one week after the NTT IndyCar Series announced the Indy 500 will be held without fans due to the risks of spreading COVID-19.
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,” said 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 organizing 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.”
The call to hold the event without fans comes after a plan to host a limited number of ACO members was announced.