Businesses across a vast range of sectors have been severely impacted during this global pandemic. In many cases their daily operations have had to cease, which negatively affects employers, their employees and the Irish economy. The Irish food and hospitality sector are severely suffering, along with sports from local club games to International events.
Mondello Park, Ireland’s only FIA Internationally licenced motor circuit is just one business that has seen a halt to its operations in recent weeks. The knock-on effect of the cancellation of all circuit activity for the month of April and May is far reaching. The circuit staff comprises of full and part-time workers across several sectors of the business. The local economy sees a boost with a sizeable increase in hotel and B&B bookings during the race season, which traditionally starts in March.
Following on from the Government’s announcement of the Roadmap for Reopening Society and Business to ease the COVID-19 restrictions. The team at Mondello Park are working closing with the main sporting governing bodies (Motorsport Ireland and Motorcycling Ireland) to enable events to return in line with Government guidelines. It is recognised that we are in unprecedented times with tremendous pressure on our health services and in order for racing to return, along with track days where you can drive your own car or ride your motorcycle on track, a number of event protocols are currently being discussed to enable racing behind closed doors, whilst implementing social distance guidelines.
One of the control measures at the circuit for all attendees will be thermal scanning on entry to the circuit. The paddock will be divided into sections so competitors can park safely to ensure social distancing is implemented. The race drivers, riders and officials along with the race marshals will sign on for the event online to eliminate the need for close contact at a sign on desk. The circuit café will open on a take-away basis with a queuing system with two metre distances between customers, like what is currently in place at supermarkets around the country.
With over 300 days of circuit activity annually, Mondello Park is a hive of all things motoring throughout the year. The main motorsport events comprise of National Championship car and motorcycle races, along with drift championship events and rallycross and rally sprints. Manufacturer training and corporate incentive days are an important segment for the business, along with their vast range of driving experiences. Customers can experience the thrill of driving a fully-fledged single seat racing car, a BMW M2, M4 or M8 Competition, a Porsche or a Nissan 350Z drift car around the circuit.
Mondello Park celebrated its 50th Anniversary in 2018, whilst there will be tough times ahead the management team and the Board of Directors are now more focused and determined than ever to continue the legacy of its late owner Mr. Martin Birrane into the next 50 years.