LEXINGTON -- INDYCAR and Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course announced Saturday afternoon the The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio scheduled for Aug. 7 to 9 has been postponed.
The race will be moved to September or October on a date to be announced, Mid-Ohio said in an emailed press release.
"This decision was made through communication with local health officials, given the current environment," Mid-Ohio stated in a press release.
The announcement comes just five days after the event was scheduled. On July 27, Mid-Ohio and IndyCar officials had announced the Honda Indy 200 would be a double-header weekend, with races set Aug. 8 and 9.
It's not known what changed in the last five days regarding COVID-19 in Morrow County, which is where the track is located. According to the Ohio Department of Health website, there has not been a spike of new positive tests.
The county remained "yellow," or Level One, when Gov. Mike DeWine announced his weekly update of the Public Health Advisory System. The county had only "triggered" one of the state's seven indicators (percentage of cases in non-congregate care settings) and has been trending down in the other six.
DeWine made it clear at his most recent press conference on Thursday he remained opposed to mass gatherings due to the spread of the coronavirus and that the statewide rules prohibited gatherings of more than 10.
"We have seen cases in recent weeks where outbreaks have been connected to informal social gatherings like birthday parties, neighborhood gatherings, graduation parties, weddings, funerals, and gatherings at people’s homes," DeWine said Thursday.
"The fact remains that this virus spreads when someone with the virus comes in contact with others who don’t yet have it. When we gather together with people outside our households, we increase the likelihood this virus can spread," he said.
The track had announced it would be open to a limited amount of spectators under under “Responsible RestartOhio” guidelines for COVID-19 after receiving approval from the local health department for limited spectator attendance.
"Our team continues to work with all of our partners and our local government to identify a date later this year when we can host The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio. More information will be forthcoming as it becomes available," the track stated. "We appreciate the patience and understanding of our fans as we navigate this postponement."
The permanent road course had successfully conducted the Vintage Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio in late June.
Visit midohio.com for ongoing updates.