The latest novel coronavirus or COVID-19 has taken over as the number one news story around the world over the last few weeks. Coronavirus even made headlines in Monster Energy Supercross news this week with Ken Roczen suspending all of his dealer signing engagements due to scares brought on from the outbreak. The virus is approaching pandemic levels with over 100,000 confirmed cases all over the world and 3,400 plus confirmed deaths, and ground zero in the US seems to be up here in the Pacific Northwest.
MotoXAddicts is based in northwest Oregon outside of Portland. Just to the north of us, Washington State leads the nation in diagnosed COVID-19 cases, with 102 confirmed cases and 16 confirmed deaths as of the time of this writing. Also, recently a CenturyLink Field (home of Seattle SX) vendor employee was diagnosed with the coronavirus soon after he worked a recent XFL game there. I hate to take part in the spreading of fear that so many mainstream media outlets make their living from, but all this does beg the question: is the Seattle SX in jeopardy of being canceled, postponed or ran without spectators in the stands?
Recently, many local Seattle gatherings and very profitable large events have been canceled or postponed. The University of Washington has suspended all in-person classes and exams, and major companies like Microsoft, Google, Amazon, and Facebook have asked many of their Seattle-based office employees to work remotely from their homes. Even the Seattle Sounders—who call CenturyLink Field their home—are beginning to weigh the risks of going forward with scheduled home matches. Sounderatheart.com recently reported, “Sounders have not issued a formal updated statement as of this writing, a team official did indicate one could be coming ‘very soon’ and that they are currently digesting the latest information.”
As of this moment, we have heard nothing official from FELD or anyone on the event, but we will be reaching out to try to get their reaction to what has been happening in the Seattle area. As of today, we have read that no CenturyLink Field events have been canceled, but that the situation is being monitored closely. With the University of Washington School of Medicine gearing up to perform as many as 1000 test kits a day, there may be a much larger number diagnosed very soon. We will definitely keep everyone updated and we hope to see you all at the Seattle SX.
Update 3/8/2020: This is more real than we first thought. Today, Governor Inslee was saying to the press that they are considering mandatory measures for social distancing as part of the state’s effort to combat the outbreak. “We are looking at extending what are voluntary decisions right now,” The Seattle Times quoted from Governor Inslee. “And we’ve asked a whole host of communities to consider whether you really need to have your events right now, and they are being canceled. (Emerald City) Comic Con has been postponed. We have a number of school closures.”
Update 3/9/2020: A representative from FELD told us today that they are monitoring the situation in Seattle closely and you can read FELD’s official response below.
“Thank you for contacting us. Monster Energy Supercross is currently scheduled to proceed as planned. The health and safety of everyone attending the event is our priority, and we are monitoring the situation closely with the staff at CenturyLink Field, as well as the local authorities. Kindly check the ticketing website, Ticket Master – CenturyLink Field for updates.”
Update 3/10/2020: As we expected, it looks the Seattle SX will not be allowed to run with fans in attendance. Governor Inslee is planning to announce a ban on gatherings and events with 250 people or more for the Seattle metro area in an effort to contain the coronavirus outbreak, an AP article stated on Tuesday night. The Governor is slated to hold a news conference for on Wednesday morning to announce his new plan.
Now the question becomes, will FELD run the Seattle SX with no spectators or cancel the event altogether? These bans are likely to continue in other cities SX is planning to attend, so I’m sure the powers that be are hard at work trying to figure out a plan. Santa Clara County in California [San Jose area] was the first to announce a similar ban yesterday and their cases are relatively low.
Update 3/11/2020: Seattle SX is canceled. Governor Islee officially announced a ban this morning of all large events of over 250 people. That was followed by this statement from FELD “In accordance with the governor’s restrictions on group gatherings in King County amid coronavirus concerns, the upcoming Monster Energy Supercross event scheduled on March 28, 2020 at CenturyLink Field in Seattle has been canceled.”
Refund information for fans is located at http://www.centurylinkfield.com/event/monster-energy-supercross-20/.
Photos by: Hoppenworld