At one stage, we all thought the 2020 MotoGP World Championship would be impossible due to the coronavirus.

So says Pol Espargaro, who is now 'excited' that a 13-round European season starting at Jerez next month has been salvaged, plus the possibility of some end-of-year flyaways.

"We are all very excited [about the new calendar] because at one moment during the year - and who doesn’t tell you this is lying - we were all thinking that it will not be possible to race this year and we were already thinking about 2021," Espargaro, hotly tipped to switch from KTM to Repsol Honda next season, told the official MotoGP website.

The revised calendar contains just eight confirmed venues out of the original 20-circuits. Five of those tracks will host back-to-back events, while the fate of the four remaining flyaways will be decided by the end of next month.

Fans are not expected at the opening European rounds, but will be needed to make any flyways financially viable. Meanwhile, a strict 'closed-door' safety protocol has been created by Dorna to convince government authorities to allow grands prix to go ahead.

"Dorna have done an unbelievable job to put everything together and at least make that calendar," said Espargaro. "That calendar is for sure not like a normal calendar, flying to everywhere, which is sad for us because we want to show our sport around the world.

"And for sure the calendar is going to be quite hard, quite compressed, with three weekends in a row and then one weekend's rest. It's going to be physically demanding, especially about injuries, so we really need to be careful about that and take care of our bodies.

"But at the end we don’t care! We are just thinking we have a calendar and we are going to start and this is unbelievable."

The Spaniard added that the compressed and unique nature of the calendar will create a high pressure situation for all involved.

"It's a very special situation and a lot can happen that is not normal," he said. "There will be [back-to-back] races in the same place and a lot of nerves, because the championship will be shorter.

"You cannot make mistakes, but you still need to be very fast because it's a short season. It's not just about the riders, also the bikes need to finish every race and the mechanics need to be super good because for sure we will have flag-to-flag or rain races. So everyone needs to be very focussed.

"I also think strategies will appear during the year. Different teams will have different strategies, but the most important is to be like one big family, really together, because it's going to be really tough."

Revised 2020 MotoGP Calendar (including free weekends)

Round

Date

Race

Circuit

 

15 July

Official Test

Jerez

1

19 July

Spain

Jerez

2

26 July

Andalusia

Jerez

 

2 August

 

 

3

9 August

Czech Republic

Brno

4

16 August

Austria

Red Bull Ring

5

23 August

Styria

Red Bull Ring

 

30 August

  
 

6 September

  

6

13 September

San Marino e Della Riviera di Rimini

Misano

7

20 September

Emilia Romagna e Della Riviera di Rimini

Misano

8

27 September

Catalunya

Barcelona

 

4 October

  

9

11 October

France

Le Mans

10

18 October

Aragon

Aragon

11

25 October

Teruel

Aragon

 

1 November

  

12

8 November

Europe

Ricardo Tormo

13

15 November

Comunitat Valenciana

Ricardo Tormo

(Final European race)

 

22 November

  
 

29 November

  

 

6 December

 

 

 

13 December

 

Deadline for any Flyaway races.

MotoGP 2020: List of 'To Be Confirmed' events

1

4 October

Thailand

Buriram

2

1 November

Malaysia

Sepang

3

15 November

Americas

COTA

4

22 November

Argentina

Termas de Rio Hondo

MotoGP 2020: List of Cancelled events

1

8 March

Qatar (MotoGP class)

Losail

2

31 May

Italy

Mugello

3

21 June

Germany

Sachsenring

4

28 June

Netherlands

Assen

5

12 July

Finland

KymiRing

6

30 August

Great Britain

Silverstone

7

18 October

Japan

Motegi

8

25 October

Australia

Phillip Island

 

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