This year’s Tour de France could start a month late due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Parisian say that the mayors of the cities where the stages end have been approached by the organizers of the ASO race about the possibility of moving Le Tour to a start date on July 25 in Nice, which will culminate in Paris on August 16.
The death toll from coronavirus in France has exceeded 10,000, but it looks like this year’s tour is going somewhat as planned.
The Tour is scheduled to take place June 27-19, but these dates seem more than optimistic given the current circumstances.
The Giro D’Italia has already been pushed back, while the Critérium du Dauphiné has also bitten the dust for 2020.
There was talk of a shortened Tour de France, one being run behind closed doors, and even a merger of the Tour, Giro and La Vuelta.
Last week, the race director, Christian Prudhomme, categorically excluded the concept “behind closed doors” because it would eliminate all the tourist and economic advantages of the race.
Local authorities appear to be open to a later start of the race this year.
Privas in south-eastern France is expected to welcome the arrival of Stage 5, with its mayor Michel Villa quoted by the Spanish press agency Efe as saying, “It is okay for us to delay a month if the health situation is favorable by then.
“We can maintain the planned logistics. “
Villa added: “It is better to welcome the Tour de France in August than not to welcome it or to do it without an audience.”
Participating teams have also been approached for a later start-up, and none seem to object.
A final decision by the ASO race organizers should not be made on how to progress until May 15.
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