The French parliament approved a new law this past weekend requiring all athletes (professional, elite, amateur and weekend warriors) participating at sporting events in the country to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 due to the highly contagious omicron variant.

Beginning 24 January the law requires vaccination for all athletes and spectators who use public facilities or properties, this includes cyclosportives and gran fondos.  A negative COVID test will no longer be accepted.  

The government indicated that no exceptions will be made for athletes from other countries as the law, “applies to everyone, to volunteers and to elite sportspeople, including those coming from abroad, until further notice.”

The law defines “Fully Vaccinated” as 1) having had two doses of AstraZeneca, Pfizer or Moderna vaccines for more 7 days, or a single dose of Janssen within 28 days.  2) One dose of any of the preceding two-dose vaccines is acceptable if someone has had COVID. 3) If the final dose of the vaccine was more than 7 months ago, a booster jab is MANDATORY, but this is expected to change to 4 months in February.

Individuals presenting fraudulent proof of full vaccination will be fined 1000 euros and event organisers who do not follow the new law may be fined up to 1000 euros.  

Springtime amateur events with a large numbers of riders traveling from outside France that are likely to be affected include Paris-Nice Cyclosportive 12 March, GFNY Cannes 27 March, La  Bisou 3 April, Paris-Roubaix Challenge 16 April and the UCI Gran Fondo World Championship qualifying race 66 Degrés Sud Cyclo on 30 April.