UCI seeks alternative host to replace cancelled 2020 Road World Championships
The UCI, cycling’s international governing body, is looking to stage an alternative event after next month’s Road World Championships in Switzerland was cancelled due to the government’s extension of a ban on large events.
The Swiss government put a ban on events involving more than 1,000 people back in February in an attempt to contain the spread of the coronavirus.
The 2020 Road World Championships was due to begin on 30 September from Aigle and end in Martigny on 27 September, but the government ban has now been extended until 30 September.
The UCI said due to the extension on the ban, coupled with the fact that visitors from 45 countries are subject to quarantine before entry into Switzerland, the event was now impossible to stage.
It said: “With eleven events over eight days, the specificities of a circuit race in terms of social distancing and the flow of spectators constitutes and insurmountable obstacle with strong constraints.”
In statement, Gregory Devaud and Alexandrew Debons, co-presidents of the organising committee, added: “We are sad and disappointed. We have worked hard for almost two years to deliver a magnificent event on an extraordinary course.
“We are aware that the national and world health situation requires cautionary measures and our thoughts are with all those who have been affected by the virus.”
However, despite the tight timeline, the UCI said given the importance of the event to cycling, it is now working towards finding an “alternative project” for the 2020 event, with priority given to a location in Europe and on the same dates.
It said: “It could include all or some of the planned races. The UCI will look for a host city that would be able to provide a route as challenging as that in Aigle-Martigny and which would therefore suit the same type of riders who had initially planned to participate in Switzerland.
“Conscious that time is of the essence for the athletes, the National Federations and all implicated parties, the UCI will communicate more information as soon as possible and will take a final decision by 1 September at the latest.”