World Tour Resumes at Vuelta a Burgos...So Does COVID19

Reading Cycling News, UAE just sent three riders home for positives. Israel Cycling also has a spike…I would have thought, if any group of humans could escape the reach of COVID19 it would be the WT teams. I’m making a lot of assumptions that the athletes are not going out to socialize nor the staff. Perhaps I’m wrong. Here in the US baseball just started back and already games are being cancelled for outbreaks with in the teams. Frustrating is all. Anyone know the inner workings of a pro tour team outside of the actual race? Do the riders have free rein to do and go where they please right now? Or are they semi-locked down between stages?

Not sure of team/race “bubble” protocols but Israel SU have also sent riders home. And towns along certain race routes have denied passage to the races, forcing alternate routes.

I’m not sure why the rider’s union would allow racing esp when it’s known what kind of damage the virus can cause to endurance sport organs, effectively ending a riders career if they get infected. They scream about hot temps and wet roads but a life-threatening virus is ok?


I think there’s a fine line between wanting to race and being safe. Almost all of the pros I’ve seen interviewed want to get back racing in some form, hence lack of opposition from the riders union.
The localities of where they are racing are (rightfully) putting blocks on large numbers of outsiders coming into remote areas and potentially bringing the virus.

My personnel opinion is, money/aso are very much forcing the issue, if people were making sensible decisions, having hundred of people arrive in remote areas every 2 or 3 days is going to cause issues, and that’s before the encouragement of bringing crowds out to support users.

On the plus side, if we can see a race without pr**ks running alongside riders that would be amazing. I’ve been to see 2 mountain stages of the tdf and never had the inclination to run next to or in front of riders while they are racing.


A lot more spectators at the finish (last 400m) and especially the last 100m. I watched Tiz Cycling on my phone so it was hard to see but, it looked like many spectators had masks on at least…

Good points @Captain_Doughnutman and @Hoppy. We are seeing a real world example of risk reward. I was just super surprised to read how many contract this given how careful they must be! It just seems like a matter of time for most of us. I pray symptoms will be mild and not life long for most of the world population.

I suspect the reason these guys are getting infected stems from the lifestyle of living on the road when they are off the bike. Their chances of exposure are much higher as opposed to when they are racing and spreading from racer to racer.

You would think that a professional athlete would be taking extra precaution and isolating themselves. This is career-ending stuff. The fact that there are pro’s in all sports that are testing positive says otherwise.

Must be frustrating to be a team owner and see your athletes turning up positive.


Not sure I agree with that viewpoint, kind of smacks of victim blaming.

Unless teams provide bubbles then there is only so much athletes can do to limit contact with others.
Even at races where there are bubbles people are coming out with a positive results.
Should the question not be aimed at the owners saying, do they need to be racing now?

If the second wave is incoming in Europe as reported we might not get much more racing this year as to carry on regardless of other factors is poor form and shows no duty of care to the riders or local communities they will descend upon.

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Victim blaming? Really? Riding a bike is a solo endeavor and you don’t need to ride with teammates to train; certainly not during a pandemic. If you do, that’s a choice that could have consequences.

Imagine you are one of the riders that has chosen to remain solo. You are on the roster for a race, but you encounter teammates who are not following the same protocol as you. That wouldn’t be frustrating?

Regardless, I would hope that teams have some sort of strict protocol in place to ensure riders and staff are not coming in contact with outsiders that could infect them. The positive tests suggest otherwise on certain teams. Not good for sport.

I sincerely doubt there are many riders who will arrive at a race only trained solo. Even in the current climate.
Pretty much every team has been having camps for the last 4-6 weeks, ineos, ISN, mitchelton, sunweb etc all have been just by looking at a few people I follow on insta or the home footage from the zwift Tdf…

Plus, if you are to train by yourself it doesn’t mean you or the people you come into contact with are virus free, It only reduces the risk. There will still be positives from this.

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We’re wondering about the rider bubble. Very valid questions and points. But I wonder about another angle. Are there spectators at these races and on the road side yelling at the racers? If so, your bubble can be as good as bubble boy’s, but once you start the race all that gets screwed by spectators.

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It’s probably important to note that this is potential damage, not necessarily certain. Obviously there are individuals who contract COVID and come out just fine as if nothing happened, while others have minor symptoms with long impact. This is certainly not to downplay any of it, I just think it’s important to note we really don’t have much grasp on the severity/frequency of longer lasting effects and how long “longer” might be.


Your very much correct in that there are lots of unknowns and the impact to fit & healthy people can be negligible, but COVID has to be looked at in a wider context, it passes from A to B so easily that you just don’t know who you are putting at risk inadvertently.

If your going to bubble, it looks like the NBA have got it right, but you can’t do that with cycling. The amount of travelling, different hotels and potential spectator interaction means cycling carries a greater risk of athletes catching it more than other sports.

Yup, ahead of the curve. First to get mass testing, first to return to competition. Good to see them using their bubble power to do good things:

Let’s hope all these returns-to-competition are worth it.