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Strade Bianche and Milan-San Remo set to take place, organiser confirms

Joe Robinson
2 Mar 2020

Italian races threatened with cancellation due to ongoing coronavirus outbreak

Race organiser RCS is confident Strade Bianche, Tirreno-Adriatico and Milan-San Remo will take place despite the ongoing coronavirus outbreak in Italy.

Belgian newspaper Het Laatste Nieuws has reported that RCS contacted all participating teams by email to inform them that the Italian races throughout March would take place despite the recent cancellation of fellow sporting events due to coronavirus.

In the past weeks, authorities have cancelled a number of football and rugby games around Italy as a means of controlling the spread of the virus. This was joined by entire towns and regions, including Lombardy, going into lockdown.

RCS has said that while the racing, which starts with Strade Bianche on Saturday, is scheduled to take place, the situation could change if the current coronavirus situation in Italy continues to worsen.

Over the weekend, confirmed cases of coronavirus continued to rise with almost 1,000 in the region of Lombardy alone, the region in which Milan-San Remo starts.

The first race to take place will be Strade Bianche on the Saturday 7th March followed by Tirreno-Adriatico from 11th to 17th March and then Milan-San Temo on Saturday 21st March.

During this time, the women's peloton will also tackle Strade Bianche on the same say as the men, and the Trofeo Alfredo Binda on 22nd March.

Last week, the coronavirus saw the RCS-organised UAE Tour cancelled mid-race after two UAE-Team Emirates staff members were reported to have tested positive for the virus.

All teams, staff, organisers and journalists were then put into lockdown as medical staff tested each individual for the illness.

The majority of teams have since left the imposed hotel quarantine, however three teams remain for further testing after it was rumoured others on their hotel floor had tested positive.

The UAE Tour joined the women's Tour of Chongming Island and men's Tour of Hainan as races cancelled due to the ongoing coronavirus.

Keeping an eye on the developing situation, the UCI issued comment on the potential cancellations and its priority of rider safety.

'The UCI is following the evolution of this epidemic and the potential consequences for the organisation of international competitions on a daily basis. It is also concerned with protecting riders from all risk of contamination and avoiding the spread of coronavirus to other countries.'