COVID-19 information for clubs and event organisers

Tuesday 17 March, 2020

Motorsport Australia is fully aware of the evolving situation regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and understands that it is having a significant impact on the community, including those involved in motorsport.

The recent announcement by the Federal Government restricting the number of people at any gatherings to 500 means that there may be some impact on your upcoming event, however it is likely that many smaller events will not be impacted by this restriction.

Spectators may still be allowed to your event, but the total number of people at the event cannot exceed 500, including competitors, crew, media, spectators and so on. We are currently awaiting a formal clarification from all State Governments as to whether the limit of 500 excludes operational staff, officials and volunteers. 

In light of the above, Motorsport Australia believes that many events can continue to go ahead, with the appropriate precautions and infrastructure in place.

As an organisation responsible for setting up an event, we would like to highlight some important steps to consider to ensure the risk of infection remains low.

As such, we believe the following precautions should be put in place:

  • Encouraging social distancing amongst event attendees (standing 1.5m away from others)
  • Providing drivers’ and officials’ briefings electronically – distributing a Powerpoint presentation via email in advance to competitors will avoid having everyone meeting in one room at the event
  • Any further officials’ briefings that are required should be short (under 15 minutes) and conducted in an open area
  • Ensure that all participants must not attend your event if they are unwell or showing any symptoms of COVID-19
  • Ensure hand sanitisers and hand washing facilities are readily available at events, including for officials at their various locations
  • Appropriate spacing of the paddock
  • Radio cleaning and changing of the foam tip between personnel changes and at the end of day
  • Limiting the numbers in Race Control and limiting access to others
  • Hand sanitiser at equipment distribution
  • Consider fixed ratios of driver to crew (dependent on class) to have clear indications of numbers (to ensure numbers remain below 500)

Specifically, regarding medical requirements at the event, our Chief Medical Officer Dr Brent May has provided the following information:

  • Your Club’s First Aid provider must have the knowledge and process to conduct a basic assessment for COVID-19 symptoms if someone presents with an illness or concern
  • UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES is a person complaining of a fever or respiratory illness to be allowed into your Club’s First Aid facility. Were that to happen, the facility must be immediately closed down and be cleaned and disinfected
  • Your Club MUST PROVIDE a separate area to conduct a COVID-19 assessment. It does not need to be inside a building
  • It is preferable that your first aid provider wears the recommended PPE if assessing a patient for COVID-19 or maintains adequate distance (>1.5m)
  • If they have a supply of masks, you should provide one to the patient and advise them to leave the Circuit call the COVID-19 Information line 1800 020 080 and present to a designated COVID-19 clinic
  • The area must be adequately cleaned after the patient has been assessed including all touched surfaces to be cleaned with appropriate detergent or bleach solution known to kill the virus

In times like these, it is important that we can enjoy our sport in a safe and practical way, while ensuring good hygiene and social distancing practices are maintained. As stated above, Motorsport Australia is acutely aware that the situation changes regularly. We will endeavour to provide you with regular updates as soon as is practical.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.

For more information and useful resources, we encourage you to read the following websites:
Department of Health’s COVID-19 updates
Australian Institute of Sport’s COVID-19 and sport resources

Motorsport Australia: Return to Race