Effects of coronavirus on professional races

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Hmm, maybe we will see more attacking than usual in those early stages, since a rider could at least make a partial claim to victory if he’s in yellow in a scenario where they shut down the race part-way through?

Maybe ASO will have a rule of thumb regarding how stages must be completed for a shortened tour to count as a win in the record books. Like American baseball—if five innings are completed when a rainstorm ends the game, the team who is ahead gets the win!
 
Hmm, maybe we will see more attacking than usual in those early stages, since a rider could at least make a partial claim to victory if he’s in yellow in a scenario where they shut down the race part-way through?

Maybe ASO will have a rule of thumb regarding how stages must be completed for a shortened tour to count as a win in the record books. Like American baseball—if five innings are completed when a rainstorm ends the game, the team who is ahead gets the win!
The same what I thought. The article says that they will test only on the rest days. Therefore a positive test with the potential lead to a race abort could happen only on the rest days.
For the Tour de France that would mean that the race could be stopped after stage 9 (after the Pyrenees) or after stage 15 (after the Grand Colombier). If the organisaors will communicate this before the race, the race will be very interesting to watch even during the first stages..
 
I don't know, but I don't think the probability of a (Corona-) positive rider at the Tour is very high.
I think everyone is really, really careful. They get tested in advance and they do everything they can to avoid getting infected. And Corona does not seem to spread extremely easily.
The biggest risk are probably staff or people involved in organization who are not quite as careful as the riders themselves, but I think as some might even risk losing their jobs if they don't do as they are told and the riders will avoid all unnecessary contact even with them, the risk should not be too high.
I think smaller races are way more in danger of getting cancelled, because maybe there not everyone involved will be so over-cautious.
 
I don't know, but I don't think the probability of a (Corona-) positive rider at the Tour is very high.
I think everyone is really, really careful. They get tested in advance and they do everything they can to avoid getting infected. And Corona does not seem to spread extremely easily.
The biggest risk are probably staff or people involved in organization who are not quite as careful as the riders themselves, but I think as some might even risk losing their jobs if they don't do as they are told and the riders will avoid all unnecessary contact even with them, the risk should not be too high.
I think smaller races are way more in danger of getting cancelled, because maybe there not everyone involved will be so over-cautious.
I don't think so because they - by nature - last a shorter amount of time, and there will be no testing of the riders during those races, so no risk of testing positive during the event.
 
I don't know, but I don't think the probability of a (Corona-) positive rider at the Tour is very high.
I think everyone is really, really careful. They get tested in advance and they do everything they can to avoid getting infected. And Corona does not seem to spread extremely easily.
The biggest risk are probably staff or people involved in organization who are not quite as careful as the riders themselves, but I think as some might even risk losing their jobs if they don't do as they are told and the riders will avoid all unnecessary contact even with them, the risk should not be too high.
I think smaller races are way more in danger of getting cancelled, because maybe there not everyone involved will be so over-cautious.
Well don´t get me wrong, I also don´t want this to happen. I hope that the tour will go over 21 stages.
But in the world we have 15 million detected cases now. With the factor 10 (undetected infections) we have 150 million infections, so it also doesn´t need that much to get infected. Because the riders have to perform at their best every day, their immun system is also vulnerable. So I would not say that the possibility of a positive corona case during a grand tour is that low.
What will happen when just a staff member will get tested positive is also an important question. Will the race then gets cancelled, too?
 
Define "extremely easily".
Okay, not exactly a scientific term. :D I mean most infections can be traced down to slightly prolongued contacts in stuffy indoor places. I remember a "case study" of a chinese woman infecting people in Germany during her business-stay and she infected people she worked with in closed rooms, someone she had lunch with, but not the taxi-driver or hotel staff or other people she just briefly had contact with. That's what I was thinking about.

toby, you're right, no tests means no positives unless someone actually shows symptoms.
 
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Hmm, maybe we will see more attacking than usual in those early stages, since a rider could at least make a partial claim to victory if he’s in yellow in a scenario where they shut down the race part-way through?

Maybe ASO will have a rule of thumb regarding how stages must be completed for a shortened tour to count as a win in the record books. Like American baseball—if five innings are completed when a rainstorm ends the game, the team who is ahead gets the win!
Or motorsports, like in Formula 1 where they used to designate half points if a certain % of the race had been completed but not a different % of race distance which would enable them to treat it as a completed race.

I'd say it's very difficult to achieve something along those lines and give something fair, but precedents have been set in individual stages which have wound up proving potentially decisive - and incredibly divisive at the time, but by and large become footnotes in retrospect. Take, for example, the Richie Porte motorbike crash in the 2015 Tour. Strictly speaking by the rules Froome running up the mountain without his bike should be a DQ, which would have opened up even more arguments than there already were about the fairness of the rules; annulling the stage at the time of the crash may have awarded a time bonus to those in the incident which was far from ideal, but it was better than either DQing the yellow jersey for an incident that was out of his control, or abandoning one of the most basic tenets of the sport which is protected by that rule, that being that the winner of a bike race has to race on a bike (realistically, that rule would not have been designed with an incident like that in mind, but had it been breached, it sets a dangerous precedent for future incidents, as we have seen from the way time limits are increasingly ignored by the bunch once there's enough of them not to be afraid of being ejected from the race, as seen to its ultimate extent in the 2016 Vuelta).

Less contentiously, you also have last year's Tour-deciding stage with the annulling of the stage on the descent of the Iseran and the decision to take the time at the top of the Iseran as final. Of course, had the other riders known at the time Bernal made his attack that the summit of the Iseran was the finish and they didn't need to conserve energy for a final climb to Tignes, then perhaps he would not have been given the kind of rope he was. Certainly a lot of other riders will have set their strategy out around expecting Bernal to tire riding Tignes and making tactical decisions about towing Thomas all the way to the final climb. And this is rather eased by the fact that Alaphilippe being dropped meant that the group did ride a high tempo to put pressure onto him as well. But in the wake of it, it was a very difficult pill to swallow, after one of the best Tours in years, that it would end in a kind of damp squib way with time taken at a point where nobody was really actively fighting for position and the stage - ultimately settling the GC - being taken by somebody who had been allowed more time than they would ever be granted willingly on a final climb. Yet here we are 12 months down the line, and nobody really bothers too much about it. Maybe if Bernal becomes a divisive figure a few years down the line it will be revisited and argued ad nauseaum like Chaingate or the Stelvio neutralisation that the maglia rosa decided was carte blanche to stop for a coffee, but even then, we don't really discuss the Ventoux motorbike incident much these days and just sort of accept that Froome won the 2015 Tour, and Froome is about as divisive a figure as the sport has seen since Armstrong.

However, the unifying factor is that they won after 21 days of racing. Occasionally we've seen a win after fewer, such as the cancellation of the original Val Martello stage in 2013 (so Nibali won the Giro in only 20), but generally speaking, it's a three week race which is occasionally slightly abridged in part, but has a genuine finish. If they just stop mid-race and they don't make it to the Champs Elysées, or the Paseo del Prado, or whatever, it won't feel right. With the abbreviated stages in the past, it all kind of came out in the wash. Bernal was still wearing the maillot jaune on the Champs and Nairito still crossed the line in Trieste in pink. Whatever happened in the middle, there was an ending, which gave a sense of closure to the race. It was over, and that individual had won it. I don't know if I would be able to have the same sense of acceptance of the winner if the race simply stopped after 15 stages and that was that.
 
Or motorsports, like in Formula 1 where they used to designate half points if a certain % of the race had been completed but not a different % of race distance which would enable them to treat it as a completed race.

I'd say it's very difficult to achieve something along those lines and give something fair, but precedents have been set in individual stages which have wound up proving potentially decisive - and incredibly divisive at the time, but by and large become footnotes in retrospect. Take, for example, the Richie Porte motorbike crash in the 2015 Tour. Strictly speaking by the rules Froome running up the mountain without his bike should be a DQ, which would have opened up even more arguments than there already were about the fairness of the rules; annulling the stage at the time of the crash may have awarded a time bonus to those in the incident which was far from ideal, but it was better than either DQing the yellow jersey for an incident that was out of his control, or abandoning one of the most basic tenets of the sport which is protected by that rule, that being that the winner of a bike race has to race on a bike (realistically, that rule would not have been designed with an incident like that in mind, but had it been breached, it sets a dangerous precedent for future incidents, as we have seen from the way time limits are increasingly ignored by the bunch once there's enough of them not to be afraid of being ejected from the race, as seen to its ultimate extent in the 2016 Vuelta).

Less contentiously, you also have last year's Tour-deciding stage with the annulling of the stage on the descent of the Iseran and the decision to take the time at the top of the Iseran as final. Of course, had the other riders known at the time Bernal made his attack that the summit of the Iseran was the finish and they didn't need to conserve energy for a final climb to Tignes, then perhaps he would not have been given the kind of rope he was. Certainly a lot of other riders will have set their strategy out around expecting Bernal to tire riding Tignes and making tactical decisions about towing Thomas all the way to the final climb. And this is rather eased by the fact that Alaphilippe being dropped meant that the group did ride a high tempo to put pressure onto him as well. But in the wake of it, it was a very difficult pill to swallow, after one of the best Tours in years, that it would end in a kind of damp squib way with time taken at a point where nobody was really actively fighting for position and the stage - ultimately settling the GC - being taken by somebody who had been allowed more time than they would ever be granted willingly on a final climb. Yet here we are 12 months down the line, and nobody really bothers too much about it. Maybe if Bernal becomes a divisive figure a few years down the line it will be revisited and argued ad nauseaum like Chaingate or the Stelvio neutralisation that the maglia rosa decided was carte blanche to stop for a coffee, but even then, we don't really discuss the Ventoux motorbike incident much these days and just sort of accept that Froome won the 2015 Tour, and Froome is about as divisive a figure as the sport has seen since Armstrong.

However, the unifying factor is that they won after 21 days of racing. Occasionally we've seen a win after fewer, such as the cancellation of the original Val Martello stage in 2013 (so Nibali won the Giro in only 20), but generally speaking, it's a three week race which is occasionally slightly abridged in part, but has a genuine finish. If they just stop mid-race and they don't make it to the Champs Elysées, or the Paseo del Prado, or whatever, it won't feel right. With the abbreviated stages in the past, it all kind of came out in the wash. Bernal was still wearing the maillot jaune on the Champs and Nairito still crossed the line in Trieste in pink. Whatever happened in the middle, there was an ending, which gave a sense of closure to the race. It was over, and that individual had won it. I don't know if I would be able to have the same sense of acceptance of the winner if the race simply stopped after 15 stages and that was that.
Great points, and engaging to think about precedents from three of the most renarkable stages in grand tour history!
 
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The peloton is made for a super-spreading event. You have more than 150 riders, all massed together, and breathing explosively hard, which will maximize not only the amount of virus than an infected person exhales into the air, but the distance that it will travel. And of course, no one will be wearing face masks :)

Against that, the riders will be moving at high speed much of the time, which will help disperse the virus. And anyone infected will be breathing into the wind, and away from people who will be facing him. But the high speed also means that larger droplets, which contain more virus, will travel further before settling to the ground. If the riders immediately behind someone who happens to be infected don't change their positions for a while, they will be exposed to a constant stream of the virus. They will be taking in an enormous volume of air per unit time, much more than, AFAIK, any laboratory study has attempted to replicate. And when the peloton slows down, say, in a long intermediate climb when there are few attacks and most of the riders stay together, the potential for spread increases.

On narrow or technical roads, contenders like to move to the front, to lessen their chances of getting caught behind a crash. They might want to consider the same strategy to reduce their chances of being in some viral slipstream. But there's a built-in conflict here. To minimize getting infected, you want to keep your nose in the wind. To conserve energy, of course, you want riders right in front of you.
 
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The peloton is made for a super-spreading event. You have more than 150 riders, all massed together, and breathing explosively hard, which will maximize not only the amount of virus than an infected person exhales into the air, but the distance that it will travel. And of course, no one will be wearing face masks :)

Against that, the riders will be moving at high speed much of the time, which will help disperse the virus. And anyone infected will be breathing into the wind, and away from people who will be facing him. But the high speed also means that larger droplets, which contain more virus, will travel further before settling to the ground. If the riders immediately behind someone who happens to be infected don't change their positions for a while, they will be exposed to a constant stream of the virus. They will be taking in an enormous volume of air per unit time, much more than, AFAIK, any laboratory study has attempted to replicate. And when the peloton slows down, say, in a long intermediate climb when there are few attacks and most of the riders stay together, the potential for spread increases.

On narrow or technical roads, contenders like to move to the front, to lessen their chances of getting caught behind a crash. They might want to consider the same strategy to reduce their chances of being in some viral slipstream. But there's a built-in conflict here. To minimize getting infected, you want to keep your nose in the wind. To conserve energy, of course, you want riders right in front of you.
The theory and daresay I say is that all riders will be tested prior to the theory - So Soit's unlikely any rider in the peleton will have the virus - This is completely different to the general population.
 
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The peloton is made for a super-spreading event. You have more than 150 riders, all massed together, and breathing explosively hard, which will maximize not only the amount of virus than an infected person exhales into the air, but the distance that it will travel. And of course, no one will be wearing face masks :)

Against that, the riders will be moving at high speed much of the time, which will help disperse the virus. And anyone infected will be breathing into the wind, and away from people who will be facing him. But the high speed also means that larger droplets, which contain more virus, will travel further before settling to the ground. If the riders immediately behind someone who happens to be infected don't change their positions for a while, they will be exposed to a constant stream of the virus. They will be taking in an enormous volume of air per unit time, much more than, AFAIK, any laboratory study has attempted to replicate. And when the peloton slows down, say, in a long intermediate climb when there are few attacks and most of the riders stay together, the potential for spread increases.

On narrow or technical roads, contenders like to move to the front, to lessen their chances of getting caught behind a crash. They might want to consider the same strategy to reduce their chances of being in some viral slipstream. But there's a built-in conflict here. To minimize getting infected, you want to keep your nose in the wind. To conserve energy, of course, you want riders right in front of you.
WAW. If I am a rider in peloton I would go for an early break on each race after reading this post. One day races will be excited from km 0. :)
 
I would like to know the contingency plans for this year. And I second the thought from Libertine. Winning a race after only 2 weeks being completed is not the same. We have discussed the concept that the third week makes so much difference in your body. There are so many examples on how the third week have affected the race.

Questions like:
  • What happens to the team of a rider testing positive?
  • What happens if we get several positives from different teams?
  • What is the minimum cutting point for calling the race complete? if not would the Tour be nullified?
 
  • What happens to the team of a rider testing positive?
  • What happens if we get several positives from different teams?
I guess that's the whole team(s) out, if not the whole race cancelled. And I suppose that's why they have the one team per hotel floor, and private dinings rooms rule; to avoid a situation like in UAE where teams got stuck simply because they'd been staying at the same floor as a team with a rider testing positive.
(And you have no idea - or maybe you do - of how weird it is to talk about riders testing positive outside the Clinic.)

---

Anyway...

https://www.cyclingnews.com/news/quebec-and-montreal-gps-cancelled-due-to-coronavirus/

Guess it's not that big a shock.
 
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I guess that's the whole team(s) out, if not the whole race cancelled. And I suppose that's why they have the one team per hotel floor, and private dinings rooms rule; to avoid a situation like in UAE where teams got stuck simply because they'd been staying at the same floor as a team with a rider testing positive.
(And you have no idea - or maybe you do - of how weird it is to talk about riders testing positive outside the Clinic.)

---

Anyway...

https://www.cyclingnews.com/news/quebec-and-montreal-gps-cancelled-due-to-coronavirus/

Guess it's not that big a shock.
And speaking of it being strange to use the term “testing positive” outside the clinic, can we completely rule out a team hiding a positive COVID result? I’m mainly joking, but what if, during the 2nd rest day, one of the leaders has an ambiguous (“inconclusive” is the testing terminology) COVID test? The Local immunology scientists I follow have suggested that inconclusive tests should be treated as “positive” for virus until retesting. But would it allow a rider/team to utter
 
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And speaking of it being strange to use the term “testing positive” outside the clinic, can we completely rule out a team hiding a positive COVID result? I’m mainly joking, but what if, during the 2nd rest day, one of the leaders has an ambiguous (“inconclusive” is the testing terminology) COVID test? The Local immunology scientists I follow have suggested that inconclusive tests should be treated as “positive” for virus until retesting. But would it allow a rider/team to utter
What a silly post - All testing results are in the hands of the health authorities.
 
And speaking of it being strange to use the term “testing positive” outside the clinic, can we completely rule out a team hiding a positive COVID result? I’m mainly joking, but what if, during the 2nd rest day, one of the leaders has an ambiguous (“inconclusive” is the testing terminology) COVID test? The Local immunology scientists I follow have suggested that inconclusive tests should be treated as “positive” for virus until retesting. But would it allow a rider/team to utter
I thought it was the thread of the coronavirus but this infamous intervention seems the conspiracy thread
 
I thought it was the thread of the coronavirus but this infamous intervention seems the conspiracy thread
Why is conjecture about how the organization will deal with the interpretation of inconclusive test results a conspiracy? You really think it’s all so black &white that they won’t end up having to make decisions on the fly? And that it will all go as smoothly as a Swiss timepiece?
Like in today’s example? : https://www.cyclingnews.com/news/spanish-one-day-races-go-ahead-despite-concerns-surrounding-covid-19-protocols/
 
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Theoretically if not practically once riders enter the bubble of a race and they follow bio-security protocols all should be well - A rider's biggest chance to catch COVID19 is when they are not racing.
Are they really going to test riders at the start of every day, say, in a stage race? Can they actually get the test results back before the race begins? Will they test every rider twice to reduce the number of false negatives?
 
We should start to keep an eye on Spain situation again, it's already a week that they have gone over the 1.000 new cases per day mark and yesterday new cases suddenly jumped at 2.615, just for comparison when the 14th of march was imposed the nationwide lockdown the previous day new cases were 2.086.
 

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