Following recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO) and government authorities, amateur cycling event promoters around the world are cancelling events to help slow the spread of novel coronavirus.
As countries struggle to manage the worldwide pandemic, WHO recommends individuals avoid unnecessary travel, avoid events with large numbers of people and practice social distancing by maintaining 6 feet between people. Experts say these steps will help slow the pandemic and allow medical resources time to care for the infected and develop a vaccine.
European amateur cycling events are being cancelled or rescheduled by the minute in Italy, Spain, Belgium, France, Netherlands and Cyprus. Majorca 312 promoter Milestone Series announced they expect the 25 April race to be cancelled.
In North America the following gran fondos also put social health and safety ahead of promoter profit and announced cancellations:
GFNY has cancelled not only their World Championship race in New York City, but also GFNY Uruguay 14 March, GFNY Colombia 22 March, GFNY Domnican Republic 22 March, GFNY Jerusalem 3 April and GFNY Italia 5 April.
Hoping the current situation improves, the 2020 UCI Gran Fondo World Championships in Vancouver, Canada issued a coronavirus statement indicating no changes are currently planned for the 9-13 September event which expects 3000 athletes from 60 countries to attend.
Riders must qualify to race at the World Champonship event and so far three UCI Gran Fondo World Series qualifying races have been cancelled – Cyprus Gran Fondo 29 March, Gran Fondo Bintan 29 March and Tour de Brisbane 4 April.
Even as UK coronavirus cases surge by 35% in one day and grow to over 800, amateur cycling event promoters and British Cycling have decided to not follow WHO recommendations and are continuing with large group cycling events as planned.
Gran Fondo Daily News contacted British Cycling for comment and they issued the following statement:
“Current Government guidance indicates that sporting events can go ahead, and at present, all forthcoming events delivered by British Cycling are scheduled to go ahead as planned.”