The coronavirus pandemic has thwarted many people. Quarantine, layoffs, and a lot of restrictions when it comes to organizing sporting events – this is the bane of everyday life. How does cycling fare in times of contagion?
Training during the quarantine
At a time when there was only one topic on everyone’s lips – the SARS virus and the daily number of new infections, training for many people took a back seat, especially when opportunities to go outdoors were limited. For several weeks the athletes, as well as all other citizens, were forced to undergo strict quarantine orders. This was all in an effort to stop the spread of the virus, which is transmitted by droplet. Sporting events have been cancelled and in this respect, cycling is no exception. Such a situation is very difficult both for the athletes themselves and for fans, who with clenched thumbs are waiting for the decision to return to the organization of sports competitions.
Limitations in training – how to cope with them?
How to effectively practice cycling, do speed training or long runs if you can’t go outside in peace? This is a question that many athletes have faced every day. Training opportunities have been greatly reduced. For some time, not only could you not train in a group, but individual outdoor riding was also prohibited. The only option left was to train on your own at home and you had to make friends with a trainer. The contact with the coaching staff was through virtual links. There is no denying that such a situation is not conducive to building the form and is also difficult for the athlete’s psyche, programmed to train intensively every day.
However, with each week the situation is gradually improving. Not only individual, but also group trainings are now allowed. Sports camps can be organized under a sanitary regime. Personal contact with the coach has been restored. The only problem, especially for professional cyclists, is that the vast majority of races have been cancelled or rescheduled.
Changes in the calendar of sporting events
You don’t have to be a cycling enthusiast to easily notice the shifts in the calendar of sporting events. One of the most famous and recognizable road races in the world is the Tour de France. Originally, the race of nearly 3,500 kilometers was to start on June 27, but the epidemiological situation forced the organizers to postpone the event for two months. The new date is August 29.
This is not the only cycling race whose date has been modified quite significantly. The whole prestigious World Tour cycle, which is followed with bated breath by many fans not only on the routes of the competitors, but also in front of their TV sets, will start only on 1st August. It will be started by Strade Bianche. The series of events will end on November 10 with a race in China.
Nowy kalendarz potwierdzony przez UCI ?♂️
1.8 ?? Strade Bianche
5-9.8 ?? Tour de Pologne
8.8 ?? Milano-Sanremo
20-23.8 krajowe mistrzostwa
24-28.8 ?? Mistrzostwa Europy
29.8-20.9 ?? TOUR DE FRANCE
20-27.9 ?? Mistrzostwa Świata
3-25.10 ?? GIRO D'ITALIA
20.10-8.11 ?? LA VUELTA pic.twitter.com/6AnPuql1zI
— Olek Sieradzki (@oleksieradz) May 5, 2020
Complications associated with changing the date of sporting events
It is worth noting that the break in the organization of any cycling races was as long as four months. Such a long time for a large group of players can mean a drop in form. One should hope, however, that the situation is getting better. After a long break, cycling competitions are to be resumed on 11 July. The first struggle of cyclists will be able to follow the Turkish Grand Prix Erciyes.
The changes in the sporting calendar are problematic for both riders and fans, although for the former, of course, much more so. Several complications can be mentioned:
- uncertainty surrounding the whole situation,
- changes in training plans,
- cancellation of sports camps.
All this negatively affected the morale and condition of the players. Another problem is the need to choose sports competitions – after the calendar change, some events overlap.
Difficulties related to the postponement of sports events also affect the fans. The most faithful cycling fans have to postpone their vacations, book accommodation on the new date and think about how to organise transport to the venue with the pandemic restrictions still prevailing in some countries.
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