Riders from the Ukraine National Team who were stranded in Turkey, unable to return home when Russia invaded their country on February 24, have found a place to shelter until they can be repatriated thanks to the Italian Cycling Federation.
The team of elite and U23 women, and elite, U23 and junior men were at a training camp in Antalya when the invasion started and, as the fighting has continued to escalate and millions have fled Ukraine, were unable to return home.
The riders have not been named, but six juniors from Ukraine raced the Manavgat Side junior men's races on March 3-4 and the women's team took the top two spots at the Grand Prix Gazipasa on March 5. Anatolii Budiak, winner of a stage of Tour du Rwanda, claimed the Grand Prix Mediterrennean on March 6.
The Ukraine team - 20 riders and four staff - will landed in Rome on Thursday and were greeted by Italian Cycling Federation president Cordiano Dagnoni and secretary general Marcello Tolu and ushered to accommodations in L'Aquila.
"The request for help, launched by the head of delegation of the National Team Sergiy Grechyn following the closeness shown by the Italian Federation to the Ukrainian people and sportsmen, has been collected by the journalist Francesca Monzone, who covers the role of bike ambassador for the FCI," a press release from the Italian federation stated.
"The availability of the Israel Cycling Academy, which has helped the group to arrive in our country and will continue to support him from the technical point of view in their stay, was also fundamental to the success of the transfer.
"In Italy they will be able to train and to participate in the competitions on the calendar, also thanks to the help of the Abruzzi societies and of the whole world of the Italian cycling, immediately mobilized to help the Ukrainian colleagues."
Atterrati in Italia i 20 atleti e 4 tecnici ucraini sorpresi dalla guerra durante un training camp in Turchia. La @federciclismo e la @regioneabruzzo sono felici di potervi accogliere. 🇺🇦🤝🇮🇹#stopwar pic.twitter.com/owRwtVp04uMarch 10, 2022
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