Masking For Motorsport Safety

Masking For Motorsport Safety

Masks could become mandatory when the men and women of Supercars return to racing.

The facial cover-up is already well entrenched in the USA, where masks are compulsory in both IndyCar and NASCAR.

Formula One is also masking its efforts and Mercedes-Benz is setting the direction during return-to-racing tests this week at Silverstone.

COVID-19 measures for Sydney Motorsport Park cover a wide range of potential threats, with quarantined travel and accomodation at the heart of a package that includes hand sanitiser for everyone involved in the Supercars meeting.

There is no commitment yet to face masks, and a Supercars spokesman says “No” to an enquiry from Race News.

But several teams are believed to be masking-up for for Sydney, as much for the public relations benefit as for medical reasons.

NASCAR and IndyCar racing in the USA has been as heavily masked as the outlaws in the Wild West, with drivers required to be masked when they’re not wearing helmets and all support crew wearing masks at all times.

Denny Hamlin even has a custom mask that mirrors the bottom half of his face, so it looks like he is not wearing a mask, and Team Penske has used masks as a marketing opportunity with branded coverage.

“It’s not easy for the crew. It was hot with those things,” IndyCar racer Will Power tells Race News this week.

Race winner Scott Dixon had to mask-up before he could do television interviews as the race winner and his crew were masked and socially-distanced for official pictures.

When Mercedes went testing at Silverstone with Valterri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton it was also a test run for the team’s COVID-19 package.

It includes giant display boards and masks for everyone, including team chief Toto Wolff.