The UCI announced updates to its late-season revised calendars for the men’s and women’s WorldTour that include several date changes and event cancellations due to COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. Most notably, the Italian Monument Il Lombardia will move from October 31 to August 15 while three events on the top-tier women’s calendar were forced to cancel.
The sport governing body revealed its revised men’s and women’s WorldTour calendars on May 5 as a replacement for plans that were halted due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The primary focus was placed on the three Grand Tours which have all been rescheduled; Tour de France (August 29-September 20), Giro d’Italia (October 2-25) and a shortened Vuelta a España (October 20-November 8). The five Monuments were also rescheduled with Milan San Remo taking place on August 8 while Il Lombardia will now move to August 15.
In the Wednesday edition of La Gazzetta dello Sport, RCS Sport indicated that Milan-San Remo was expected to be moved to August 15 and Il Lombaria to August 8, the reverse of what the UCI published Friday.
RCS Sport expressed anger over the calendar changes after it had reportedly request to hold Milan-San Remo on the weekend preceding the Tour de France. The new calendar now sees the WorldTour kick off with Strade Bianche on August 1, Milan-San Remo on August 8 and Il Lombardia on August 15, which will overlap with the Critérium du Dauphiné from August 12-16. Tirreno-Adriatico will be held from September 7-14.
"We acknowledge the calendar published today by the UCI. As per tradition, Strade Bianche will open the one-day race season and Milano-Sanremo will be the first Classic Monument, followed by Il Lombardia," RCS Sport said in a press release.
"At this point we think about starting off safely and organizing the races in the best possible way. These calendar dates are a new challenge and will enter into the history of cycling, since these races have never been held in this period, and can symbolize the restart of our country and of our sport."
There were other changes to the men’s WorldTour including the cancellations of Eschborn-Frankfurt in Germany, Dwars door Vlaanderen in Belgium, and RideLondon-Surrey Classic in the UK.
The EuroEyes Cyclassics Hamburg in Germany will now take place on October 3 and the Gree-Tour of Guangxi in China, previously scheduled for October 15-20, will now take place on November 5-10.
The initial revisions of the Women’s WorldTour had retained 18 of the 22 events set to take place from August 1 to November 8. However, three events had already publicly announced cancellations due to health and travel restrictions surrounding COVID-19 including Postnord UCI WWT Vårgårda West Sweden TTT and road race (Sweden), as well as the Ladies Tour of Norway. In addition, the Tour of Guangxi in China has moved from October 20 to November 10.
The UCI also announced that the 2020 UCI Junior Track Cycling World Championships have been postponed one year and the 2021 UCI Mountain Bike Marathon World Championships, which were due to take place in Manizales (Colombia) have now been awarded to Elba (Italy).
"Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, several UCI World Championships will not be disputed in 2020. Taking this unprecedented situation into account, the UCI Management Committee decided, as an exception, that UCI World Champions who are unable to defend their title this year will be able to wear their rainbow jersey until the next edition of the relevant Worlds," read the UCI statement.
Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in bike racing from the grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all cycling disciplines, edits news and writes features. Currently the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten coordinates global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.
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