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Tour de France

Tour de France: Ag2r Citroën sees two non-starters with COVID-19, Lennard Kämna leaves with cold

The French team is down to three riders for the closing stages of the 2022 Tour de France, Bora-Hansgrohe's Kämna and Cofidis' Walscheid also exit.

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Ag2r Citroën is the latest team to send riders home from the Tour de France with cases of COVID-19.

Mikaël Cherel and Aurélien Paret-Peintre were diagnosed with coronavirus in health controls carried out Sunday evening.

Team officials confirmed that the “other riders, and the entire staff, returned negative tests and [will] continue to race.”

Team officials also confirmed they were the two riders mentioned by the UCI on Monday who were in isolation to wait for followup controls.

The team is down to three riders for the closing stages of the 2022 Tour.

Here’s a team press release:

“Following the weekly antigen and PCR tests carried out by ASO on Sunday, July 17, in Carcassonne and confirmed this morning, Tuesday, July 19, the results of two of our riders present a viral load that does not allow them to continue the Tour de France.

“Following the collective decision of the UCI doctor, the Tour de France doctor and the Ag2r Citroën team doctor, Aurélien Paret-Peintre and Mikaël Chérel will not start the sixteenth stage this morning in Carcassonne.”

Kämna leaves with cold, Walscheid also out with COVID

Lennard Kämna (Bora-Hansgrohe) also left the Tour on Tuesday. (Photo: Jasper Jacobs/Belga Mag/AFP via Getty Images)

Bora-Hansgrohe confirmed that stage-hunter Lennard Kämna will not start Tuesday’s 16th stage.

Officials said the German rider was suffering from a cold, and said it was not a case of COVID-19.

Due to a persistent cold that started a few days ago and didn’t improve by yesterday’s rest day, Lennard Kämna unfortunately will not start stage 16 today. Daily Covid tests that were carried out were all negative,” a team press note read.

Kämna went close to a stage win on the Super La Planche des Belles Filles on stage 7, being only caught by Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates), Jonas Vingegaard and Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma) inside the final 500 meters. He also just missed out on taking the yellow jersey on stage 10 to Megève, coming up 11 seconds short after a day in the break.

Team Cofidis also confirmed that Max Walscheid did not start due to a COVID-19 case.

Jakob Fulgsang (Israel Premier Tech) also did not start due to a broken rib suffered Sunday.