COVID Tales From the Giro d’Italia
In case you’ve missed it, COVID-19 is vying for it’s own jersey at this year’s Giro d’Italia.
Unlike the “two COVID positives and you’re out” rule France imposed on Le Tour – where any two positive results from a team’s riders or support staff meant the whole team went packing home – the Giro took a less strict (some would say flawed, including me) approach. Only the positive case would be isolated and sent home.
In the first week, Mitchelton-Scott’s team leader Simon Yates tested positive, and went home. Then came additional rest day testing this week. Four more Mitchelton-Scott support staff tested positive, and the team took themselves out. Neither the UCI nor Giro organizers made that a requirement, yet the team took it upon themselves to do the right thing.
Also during the rest day testing, Team Jumbo-Visma’s leader Steven Kruijswijk tested positive. They took the high road and in the interests of everybody’s health, the whole team left the race Tuesday morning.
Team Sunweb’s sprint leader Michael Matthews tested positive and went home, but the team has kept on racing. Ineos-Grenadiers and AG2R La Mondiale both had support staff test positive, but have kept their teams racing too.
Now it’s emerged that 17 police motorbike officers have tested COVID-positive. They’ve been working the Giro E-bike event that runs on the same roads in the hours before the regular Giro. If you’ve ever watched a race using a “rolling enclosure” these police motorbikes hopscotch along the race route, positioning themselves at intersections and some driveways to keep vehicles off the course. Often they will be stopped right next to race fans – possibly putting them at risk of infection too.
Team EF Pro Cycling have been “quacking” to the organizers and the UCI to bring the race to a full controlled conclusion sooner than later. And I don’t blame them either. Yet the UCI has taken their own stupid finger out and pointed it back at riders and their support staff, saying they aren’t doing enough to keep themselves safe.
Come on UCI, that’s the easy way out! Sounds like victim blaming to me. Do the needed hard thinking and get this sorted out for the sake of the racers.
I’m convinced the Giro will not make Milan. If they’re lucky, it will conclude on the rest day next Monday. The coronavirus knows nothing about the UCI’s COVID goal to pursue “the spirit of collaboration and unity in professional cycling.”
The Tour of Flanders runs this Sunday, with both men’s and women’s races. Get up early to watch those live. I hope I’m wrong, but they’ll be the last pro cycling events this year.
The COVID pandemic will take out La Vuelta Espana before it even begins. Ok, maybe they’ll try to start something in Spain, but it will be a much abbreviated event. And that will be it for racing in 2020.
Just like I think this is it for our outdoor riding in 2020 – not because of COVID though, but because of this early winter storm headed our way in the next 24 hours or so.
If There’ll Be a Saturday Ride, Here Are the Details
I will keep hold of some optimism that the storm stalls in BC – and we’ll have on more chance to ride the west loop from Hampton Terrace.
If winter does roll in, I suggest using Saturday to get your indoor training “cave” all set for stationary training. Get yourself reacquainted with your favouite online training platform. Dust off that computer, tablet or phone mount. I’ll be organizing some Zwift Meetup rides going forward. I also have a Rouvy account – so please let me know if you’re interested in some organized sessions over there too.
But if there’s no snow and/or Saturday isn’t freezing, then we’ll ride one more 113km loop west of Edmonton. There’s an out-and-back leg we can exclude to chop off about 40km from this ride if we’d like to run it shorter.
Meet at the Hampton Terrace shopping complex, on the very west end of Lessard Road (head west off the Lessard Road exit from the Henday).
Sign up for the Saturday ride HERE >>>Ride Registration Form
Riding details are:
- Hold an active 2020 Club Membership. If not, you must have it in order to ride. Go >> HERE NOW
- If you joined the club before June 6 you’ll need to send us your signed ABA COVID Waiver in order to participate for the season. Download it HERE >>> ABA – Adult Waiver COVID 2020 and email your completed form to Coach Kevin Coaching@VelocityCyclingClub.ca
- All new memberships from June 6 onward will automatically require your agreement to the waiver.
- Meet Saturday, October 17, 11am at the Hampton Terrace shopping complex. Staging allowed in groups of up to 15. The ride is about 113kms. See all the Event details HERE >>October 17 Ride
- You must PREREGISTER before 8:30AM on Saturday, October 17, for this ride using this >> GOOGLE FORM If you do not preregister, sorry you cannot ride that day. Absolutely no drop-ins will be accepted.
Find a way. Not an excuse.