‘No general state of concern’ about COVID-19, says Vuelta a España director

LES PRAERESNAVA SPAIN AUGUST 28 Remco Evenepoel of Belgium and Team QuickStep Alpha Vinyl Red Leader Jersey meets the media press at start prior to the 77th Tour of Spain 2022 Stage 9 a 1714km stage from Villaviciosa to Les Praeres Nava 743m LaVuelta22 WorldTour on August 28 2022 in Les Praeres Nava Spain Photo by Tim de WaeleGetty Images
After stage 11, the media no longer had access to athletes in team paddocks, only at mix zones for interviews (Image credit: Tim de Waele/Getty Images)

Vuelta a España Race Director Javier Guillén has downplayed concerns about the spate of COVID-19 cases that has seen 21 riders abandon with the virus during the first half of the race.

Simon Yates (BikeExchange-Jayco), Pavel Sivakov (Ineos Grenadiers) and the Kern Pharma trio of Roger Adriá, Pau Miquel and Héctor Carretero were the latest riders to leave the Vuelta with COVID-19 before the start of stage 12 at the ElPozo meat plant. At the finish in Cabo de Gata, Guillén made an appearance on TVE’s post-stage discussion show to address the sheer volume of COVID-19 cases on the race.

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Alasdair Fotheringham

Alasdair Fotheringham has been reporting on cycling since 1991. He has covered every Tour de France since 1992 bar one, as well as numerous other bike races of all shapes and sizes, ranging from the Olympic Games in 2008 to the now sadly defunct Subida a Urkiola hill climb in Spain. As well as working for Cyclingnews, he has also written for The IndependentThe GuardianProCycling, The Express and Reuters.