The UAE Team Emirates, Alpecin-Fenix and Bahrain Victorious teams announced this Friday morning that they were withdrawing from the Tour de Suisse due to cases of coronavirus.
In total, 29 riders (including five from the Top 20!), present at the finish of the fifth stage on Thursday, did not start this Friday. The Tour de Suisse peloton now has less than 100 riders!
MDespite the cascade of abandonments, the organization decided to continue the event. The situation will be reassessed on Saturday.
The Belgian formation Alpecin-Fenix indicated that two of its members had tested positive for Covid-19. As to wolpack Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, he lost one of the pack members in the person of Louis Vervaekewhich was to accompany Remco Evenepoel in the mountain.
Bahrain Victorious also had to withdraw due to Covid-19 cases, without specifying the number of people affected.
The BORA-hansgrohe group has also announced that the Russian Aleksandr Vlasovleader of the general classification, and the German Anton Palzerpositive for the coronavirus, were also to leave the race.
Jonathan Vaughterssports director of the EF Education-EasyPost team, announced to him that four runners from the American team had also been affected by the coronavirus and forced to retire: Rigoberto Uran, Alberto Bettiol, Hugh Carthy and Stefan Bissegger.
It is for the same reasons that the UAE Team Emirates decided to leave the Tour de Suisse. Marc Hirsch and Diego Ulissi are the two positive cases on the side of the Emirati formation.
On Thursday, the Jumbo-Visma team, also affected by Covid-19, had already withdrawn from the Tour de Suisse.