The spread of the coronavirus puts Rally Estonia's certainty in some jeopardy. The social affairs ministry has said that to make a final decision on the event, scheduled for a month from now and Estonia's first ever full WRC event, developments in the spread of the coronavirus have to be followed closely.
"The situation regarding infections in Estonia is also closely monitored by the teams abroad who are coming here. In other words, if we do not get the infection under control, we will simply meet rejection from these potential competitors as well. This applies to the rally and other competitions. The next ten days are the most important, and in terms of health, we can then give an estimate of the opportunity for spectators to watch the rally in person," Ministry of social affairs undersecretary for health Maris Jesse, said.
One round of Rally Estonia will be taking place around the city of Võru.
The mayor of Võru County, in South Estonia, Anti Allas said that the rally can be organized safely when safety requirements are implemented.
"We propose that the rally should still take place, but with some limitations. We should agree on these. That they are the zones where people can watch, but they should wear face-masks to decrease the infection risk. These zones should be secured, and then we can move on with our lives," Allas added.
Further complications include that some of the WRC stars, including series leader Sebastien Ogier, come from countries whose arrivals at present require a two-week self-quarantine period.
Most spectators are thought to come from neighboring states whose rates do not put them at risk, at present, including Latvia and Finland, as well as Estonia itself.
One person who seems confident the race, which ends a months-long hiatus in the WRC calendar after the start of the pandemic, is Welsh driver Elfyn Evans, who is already in Estonia getting familiarized with South Estonian roads.
Editor: Roberta Vaino