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Life after quarantine: Nathan Haas reflects on the UAE Tour lockdown after returning home

After being released from quarantine, Nathan Haas looks back on his time in quarantine and the actions of the race organiser

Peter Stuart
10 Mar 2020

On Sunday morning, Nathan Haas and his Cofidis team, along with Groupama-FDJ, were finally released from quarantine following a week of isolation, after both teams returned their third negative test for coronavirus.

Settling back into the outside air in his home in Andorra, Nathan reflects on his extended stay.

‘Now that I’m out, it's easier to look back and see why it was necessary,’ says Haas. ‘When we were all cramped up, and on lockdown it’s really hard to clearly analyse what is going on.

'I’ve been informed since being back the huge amounts of efforts that were put in by the UCI and [race organiser] RCS, alongside our embassies to provide us with information, alleviate our discomfort and expedite the process.’

While Haas was, like many riders, a little frustrated with the situation and race organisers, but managed to fill his time productively here and there, especially with his much-shared YouTube video on staying fit while stuck indoors.

Since being released, his outlook on the behaviour of the race organiser has calmed. ‘I understand it wasn’t easy, and I do apologise to the RCS, that we or I caused additional stress for. I spoke too quickly, and out of anger whilst I was there.

‘It’s easy to get caught in a loop of frustration and blame, and I cannot thank the RCS enough for the endless hours they put in to try to fix the unfortunate situation that was in no way their fault.

‘I hope that what’s happened at UAE marks a good starting point for us to be able to continue to compete in our sport amidst this epidemic, and that we can happily say that with all the people at the race, a very low percentage did get sick, so in regards to that the efforts were a success.

‘Wow, it feels great to be home. Right now more than anything I’m eating when I want, and spending a lot of time outside. Getting back on the bike on the roads has been amazing. I landed yesterday at 1pm and was out the door training at 4pm.’

Of course, while the UAE situation has settled, doubt remains over many of the biggest races on the calendar, with the status of Paris-Roubaix generating much speculation.

As is the case with many pros, Haas remains optimistic about the season. ‘I’ve got some really big goals coming up for myself this season, and I'm still trying to look on the bright side,’ he says.

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