The Autódromo do Algarve is set to receive another high profile motor racing event. After the announcement of the Formula One race, to happen in October, the MotoGP is going to visit the southwesternmost racing track of Europe in the third weekend of November. According to Sul Informação, the race will end the 2020 MotoGP season. This means that Algarve will receive races from both the top-tiers of world car and moto racing with a few weeks in between.
State of emergency
There was already an agreement for Portimão to receive MotoGP starting in 2022. The business model of the MotoGP championship works in a different from F1. MotoGP is eager to stay close to its strongest markets; Spain is one of them, there are usually 2 or 3 MotoGP races per year and having another run in the Iberian Peninsula makes total sense. Formula One went in a different way, staging races in countries like Singapore, Bahrain, Azerbaijan and others willing and able to pay the high fees with which Portugal could not compete.
The Covid-19 pandemic created a state of emergency for both sports/businesses. The need to reduce travel (for health and financial reasons) lead to the need for finding European high profile racing tracks to receive the “circuses”. Portugal and Algarve became winners in these two particular races.
Dealing with the pandemic
There is now some open criticism in the British media (from tabloid to institutional newspapers) regarding the way the government has been dealing with Portugal after the first wave of the pandemic. Now that we’re into August, the country is consistently lowering its numbers and putting herself amongst the safe havens of Europe.
One thing is sure: the business heads of MotoGP and Formula One, two highly visible and global sports, gave their explicit approval to the work of the Portuguese and Algarvian health authorities and hospital teams.