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Defending Gent-Wevelgem champion Kirsten Wild out after COVID-19 positive

MOTTAMONTECORVINO ITALY SEPTEMBER 19 Gloria Rodriguez Sanchez of Spain and Movistar Team Women Tatiana Guderzo of Italy and Team Ale BTC Ljubljana Kirsten Wild of The Netherlands and Ceratizit WNT Pro Cycling Team during the 31st Giro dItalia Internazionale Femminile 2020 Stage 9 a 1099km stage from Motta Montecorvino to Motta Montecorvino 645m GiroRosaIccrea GiroRosa on September 19 2020 in Motta Montecorvino Italy Photo by Luc ClaessenGetty Images
Kirsten Wild during the Giro Rosa (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

Defending champion Kirsten Wild will not compete in Sunday's Women's WorldTour race Gent-Wevelgem after testing positive for COVID-19, her Ceratizit-WNT team announced late Saturday.

Wild's absence follows that of the entire Alé BTC Ljubljana squad after one of their riders also tested positive.

However, the Ceratizit-WNT team said that Wild's positive test came on Friday before she joined the Gent-Wevelgem race bubble and does not affect their participation.

"Unfortunately I am not able to defend my title in Gent-Wevelgem because I returned a positive COVID-19 test on Friday 9th October," Wild said on the team's Facebook page. "My first COVID-19 test I took on Monday 5th October returned negative but my second is now positive.

"I am very disappointed and sorry for the team that I can't be there. Luckily I got the result before I started my travel towards the team bubble, in which I left after the Giro Rosa on the 19th September, so in no way is the team bubble affected for tomorrow. 

"At the moment I am doing 'relatively' fine and will be in quarantine and will be focusing 100% on my recovery."

Wild is the third pro cyclist to test positive on Friday after Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) left the Giro d'Italia after coming up positive for the coronavirus after having mild symptoms on Friday. Jan Bakelants - also due to race Gent-Wevelgem with Circus-Wanty Gobert - was found to have the virus after displaying symptoms after training on Friday.