Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) has published the Covid-19 protocol which must be applied to the continuation of the 2020 racing season. This protocol aims to reduce the risk of transmission of the corona virus when the race rolls back.
This protocol is the result of the collective work of all relevant elements led by UCI Medical Director Professor Xavier Bigard. This guide provides details on how drivers’ medical testing and monitoring are done, as well as ensuring the race goes according to plan.
Three general principles will oversee the resumption of racing.
First, each team (racers, staff, and doctors) will form a “team bubble” . When each race starts the bubble team will join to form a “platoon bubble” .
Second, three levels of pandemic will be made to show the level of risk, which is very low, low, and moderate.
The “moderate” risk level as defined by WHO, is indicated by 20-50 Covid-19 cases per week per 100,000 population. A “low” risk level is equivalent to less than 20 cases per 100,000 population. The level of “very low” risk is characterized by the absence of cases for 3-4 weeks.
Third, the appointment of a coordinator and doctor handling Covid-19, screening of racers by the team before and during the competition, adaptation of risk zones (registration, feeding zones , award ceremonies), and respect for the preventive “bubble” principle by teams in their accommodations and when traveling in each race.
Before the race, the Covid-19 coordinator will check that the accommodations used are in accordance with the “bubble” principle . While the screening of drivers will be carried out in the days leading up to the event to detect possible carriers of the virus.
During the race, the driver will undergo medical monitoring every day. Social distancing will be applied between those who are in the “team bubble” and “peloton bubble” with people outside such as the organizing staff, the media, and the community.
If a coronavirus case arises, then the guidelines for the country where the race should take place must be followed. The organizer of the competition needs to notify participants about national health protocols related to isolation. And identify who has contact with the “carrier” .
“This protocol of instructions and recommendations is very basic, especially for teams and organizers, with the aim of restarting the bicycle race,” UCI President David Lappartient said in a press release Friday (6/19) evening.
Lappartient added, these steps still depend on the laws and actions in different host countries. So maybe it needs to be resolved later. However, this protocol is another step towards the return of bicycle racing.
“After the announcement of the racing calendar, we now have a framework that will allow riders to race again,” he said.