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Val di Sole Mountain Bike World Cup cancelled due to coronavirus restrictions

Mathieu van der Poel is the reigning European XC mountain bike champion (Image credit: Rob Jones)

The Val di Sole round of the 2020 UCI Mountain Bike World Cup has been cancelled as gatherings of over 1,000 people remain prohibited in the Trentino region of Italy until October 15 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The rescheduled 2020 Giro d’Italia is due to visit the Trentino region on October 21 for a summit finish at Madonna di Campiglio. The following day’s stage starts in the town on Pinzolo in Trentino.

The Val di Sole World Cup was due to take place from September 11-13. Two other events in Val di Sole – the UCI Trials World Cup (July 24-26) and the UCI Four-Cross World Championships (September 10-11) – have also been cancelled.

“The UCI and the organisers cooperated throughout the process, initially seeking to postpone the event to a later date in the season, before agreeing to take the difficult decision to cancel the UCI World Cup round,” the UCI said in a statement on Wednesday.

It is the third round of the 2020 Mountain Bike World Cup to be cancelled after those in Andorra and Mont-Sainte-Anne. The cross-country series is now scheduled to get underway in Lenzerheide on September 5-6, with further rounds in Les Gets and Nove Mesto before the rescheduled Mountain Bike Cross-Country World Championships in Leogang, Austria (October 5-11).

The 2020 Mountain Bike Cross-Country World Championships were initially scheduled to take place in Albstadt, Germany in June, but the event was cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Val di Sole is due to host the 2021 Mountain Bike World Championships from August 25-29, just weeks after the rescheduled Tokyo Olympics.

Italy imposed strict lockdown measures in March to combat the COVID-19 pandemic but the country has begun lifting some restrictions in recent weeks. The WorldTour calendar is due to resume in Italy with Strade Bianche on August 1, while the Giro d'Italia has been rescheduled for October 3-25. The Giro was slated to start in Budapest but the Grande Partenza will now take place in southern Italy, with the precise location expected to be revealed later this month.

In an interview with influencer Lello Ferrara on Instagram, the Giro's assistant director Stefano Allocchio said that RCS Sport will meet with government authorities in the coming days to discuss the organisation of its races. “After that, we’ll know what conditions will be imposed for the running of our races," he said.