After a long, two-month hiatus due to the United States’ unprecedented stay at home orders brought on by the COVID-19 outbreak, the 2020 Monster Energy Supercross, an FIM World Championship series, will reconvene for the final seven rounds of the Championship in Salt Lake City, Utah at Rice-Eccles Stadium starting on May 31st. The final seven rounds of the 2020 Monster Energy Supercross series will start back up with round number 11 on Sunday, May 31st and run every Sunday and Wednesday until the final round concludes the series on Sunday, June 21st with the crowning of three champions.

NBC and NBCSN Television Schedule: (*All live NBC Gold App)

Round 11 (East) – Sunday, May 31                 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm ET on NBCSN then 4:00 – 6:00 ET on NBC

Round 12 (East) – Wednesday, June 3          10:00 pm – 1:00 am ET on NBCSN

Round 13 (East) – Sunday, June 7                  5:00 pm – 8:00 pm ET on NBCSN

Round 14 (West) – Wednesday, June 10      7:00 pm – 10:00 pm ET on NBCSN

Round 15 (West) – Sunday, June 14              7:00 pm – 10:00 pm ET on NBCSN

Round 16 (East) – Wednesday, June 17        7:00 pm – 10:00 pm ET on NBCSN

Round 17 (East/West) – Sunday, June 21      3:00 pm – 4:30 pm ET on NBCSN then 4:30 – 6:00 ET on NBC

The guys at FELD have been hard at work since the lockdown was announced just before round 11 in Indianapolis and with some help from Utah’s Governor, Gary Herbert—who is a huge advocate of all action sports—the Utah Sports Commission, the Utah Department of Health Services, Rice-Eccles Stadium and the University of Utah, they have come up with what they think is a good plan for restarting the series while also keeping those involved safe. This was a huge undertaking and one that we at MotoXAddicts greatly appreciate them making happen.

Eli Tomac leads Ken Roczen by just 3 points heading into the final 7 rounds. Photo by: Octopi

On Friday, MotoXAddicts was invited to a Zoom call with the press corps of Monster Energy Supercross as Dave Prater (FELD Senior Director of Two-Wheeled Operations) and Sean Brennen (FELD SX Public Relations Manager) gave us all some insight into the 2020 Supercross COVID-19 restart plan. Dave and Sean tried to make it clear that the health and safety of all the athletes involved is FELD’s number one priority and broke down their plan for trying to ensure everyone who comes to the event is healthy and stays that way.

“This was truly a team effort between FELD, the AMA, MXSports, you all on the call, the OEMs, race teams and all our partners,” Dave Prater said. “As well as multiple state governors’ offices and multiple venues. We felt like it was important to get the industry back to work. The SX industry is heavily, if not completely, reliant on us doing events and races. That was another thing that kept pushing us: the health and integrity of the sport, not only in 2020, but as we transition and get back to normal in ’21, ’22, and into the future. We are extremely happy to do that.”

FELD has been given permission to have a maximum of 900 people on the premises and a smaller number of 400 maximum for those actually entering the stadium. Every rider and industry employee attending the event will be required to fill out and sign a health and safety commitment as well as a health questionnaire. After filling out and signing all that, everyone will be required to take a COVID-19 test inside of the Salt Lake City city limits at a drive-up testing facility. Every person attending must test negative for the virus before entering the perimeter of Rice-Eccles Stadium.

Ken Roczen has 3 wins and 8 podiums over the first 10 rounds of 2020.

If a rider or anyone who will be working at the event tests positive, due to a small percentage of false positives and other factors, they will be able to retest in 72 hours if they maintain body temperature under 100.4 degrees. If their body temperature goes over 100.4 degrees in that 72 hours, they can not retest. If they are permitted to retest and they test negative, they are good to go. If you test positive again, they will be required to quarantine in Salt Lake City for 14 days.

After the riders and industry employees attending the event test negative for COVID-19, they will be temperature checked every time they enter the perimeter of the event and they will also be required to wear masks at all times while on-site as well as adhering to the six-foot social distancing guidelines in place everywhere. We do not think the mask rule includes when riders are on track with their helmets on. Oxygen is in short supply at Salt Lake City’s high elevation and riders need all the oxygen they can get.

If a rider or industry employee attending the event leaves the state of Utah at any time during the three weeks they are required to be there for the races, they will be required to take another COVID-19 test and get another negative reading. The turnaround time for the testing at the event is 48 hours, so with the events taking place every Sunday and Wednesday, it will be next to impossible for a 450SX rider to leave and come back without missing one of the races. Although, we could see some of the 250SX East riders leaving and coming back during their short break after round 13.

Chase Sexton leads Shane McElrath in the 250SX East by 10 points.

As for track designs and track changes, the tracks will be changed for every race but because of time constraints of only two to three days of downtime between the races and likely a smaller track crew than normal, the track changes will likley not be drastic ones. Basically, obstacles will be changed, but we are told that for the most part the layout and lanes will only see very slight changes from race to race.

One other small change announced during the Zoom press corps meeting is that, due to the loss in spectator revenue—FELD’s #1 source of revenue—the 450 main event purse payout will be cut by 22.5% and the end of the year points payout purse will be cut by 17.5%. “This is something we did not want to do,” Dave Prater said. “We rely heavily on fans for our revenue stream and without fans this was essential. Not that this makes it any more palatable, but if you follow any other leagues—most recently Major League Baseball—all of those players will have to endure a salary reduction.”

Promoters, teams, the riders and everyone inside the industry alike will all be making some sacrifices to make this racing happen, and no matter the sacrifice we are pumped that the gate is finally going to drop on the home stretch of what has been an amazing 2020 Monster Energy Supercross season. And, with Monster Energy Supercross being one of, if not the only, live sport being broadcast during their Sunday and Wednesday time slots it will occupy on NBC and NBCSN’s National TV stage, the hard work by FELD and the industry to make this happen could play a huge role in growing the sport of Supercross into the future.

Dylan Ferrandis currently leads the 250SX West standings by 7 points over Justin Cooper. Photo by: Octopi.

Check out the current 450SX, 250SX East and 250SX West Championship points standings below. It’s time to get back to racing!

2020 450SX Championship Points – Rd10

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2020 450SX Championship Points – Rd10

 

2020 250SX East Championship Points – Rd4

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2020 250SX East Championship Points – Rd4

 

2020 250SX West Championship Points – Rd6

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2020 250SX West Championship Points – Rd6