NASCAR is adjusting its health protocols as COVID-19 cases increase across the country.
Beginning with this weekend’s events at Watkins Glen International, all personnel must wear a face mask in enclosed areas at all times, regardless of vaccination status. Enclosed areas include haulers and buildings, restrooms, the infield care center, race control and suites.
NASCAR said the update to its protocols was being implemented on the advice of its consulting physicians and recently issued medical guidance. Masks will not be required outdoors at NASCAR events, provided individuals refrain from sustained close contact.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo lifted COVID-19 restrictions in mid-June and Watkins Glen International announced three days later that its grandstands would be fully open to spectators for its NASCAR tripleheader weekend, which also includes the ARCA Menards Series on Friday.
Last year’s Cup race at Watkins Glen was switched to the road course at Daytona International Speedway because of COVID-19.
• Speedway Motorsports named Texas Motor Speedway executive Rob Ramage as the track’s new general manager on Wednesday after Eddie Gossage had overseen the facility through its first 25 seasons of racing.
Ramage had been the track’s general counsel since 2013, also serving as director of governmental affairs and senior vice president of finance and compliance. His responsibilities have included risk management and working with government entities, business leaders, and community advocates.
MLS ALL-STARS: Mexican stars Carlos Vela and Chicharito Hernandez, Gold Cup goalkeeping standout Matt Turner and 17-year-old Cade Cowell are among the 28 players on the Major League Soccer All-Star Game roster announced Wednesday. The MLS All-Stars will face a team of all-stars from LigaMX on Aug. 25 in Los Angeles.
The 28-man roster includes 13 players selected through voting by fans, players and the media; 13 players selected by All-Star Game head coach Bob Bradley; and two selected by MLS Commissioner Don Garber. Fifteen MLS teams are represented on the All-Star roster, led by six selections from the Western Conference-leading Seattle Sounders. The six include brothers Alex and Cristian Roldan, and striker Raúl Ruidíaz, who leads the league with 11 goals.
Turner is one of four selections from the New England Revolution. He’s coming off a Gold Cup performance during which he allowed just one goal in six matches and was named the top goalkeeper in the tournament. New England midfielder Carles Gil was also selected after leading the league with 15 assists, more than double any other player.
SPANISH LEAGUE: The Spanish government said Wednesday it will allow stadiums to have crowds of up to 40% capacity for the start of the Spanish league on Aug. 13. Only a limited number of fans had been allowed into first-division soccer games at the end of last season in parts of the country where the coronavirus pandemic was more under control.
Health Minister Carolina Darias said some restrictions will remain in place, including social distancing, use of protective masks and a ban on eating or smoking inside stadiums.
Darias said the Spanish basketball league will be allowed to have indoor crowds of up to 30%. She said the limits on attendance will be reassessed at the end of the month.
The loss of ticket revenue created huge financial problems for many soccer clubs in Spain.
CITI OPEN: British tennis player Dan Evans lost his first match on tour since testing positive for COVID-19 last month and missing the Tokyo Olympics.
Evans, who is ranked 27th and was seeded No. 6 at the Citi Open, was beaten 7-6 (1), 6-0 by Brandon Nakashima at Washington.
Evans, who received a first-round bye in Washington, said he had received one vaccination shot before getting the virus; he said his second shot has been delayed because he got sick.
In another upset, Steve Johnson came back to top No. 3 Alex de Minaur 6-7 (5), 6-4, 6-2.
Like Evans, de Minaur sat out the Olympics after testing positive for COVID-19.