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Sibiu Tour riders barred from racing Strade Bianche, Milano-Sanremo by Italian decree on COVID-19

Italy's Health Minister ruled that anyone visiting Romania or Bulgaria must quarantine for 14 days. That means riders who raced the Sibiu Tour will miss Strade Bianche and Milano Sanremo.

Riders who competed in last week’s Sibiu Cycling Tour in Romania will be barred from racing the upcoming Strade Bianche or Milano-Sanremo WorldTour races.

The exclusion stems from a decision on public safety made by Italy’s Minister of Health, Roberto Speranza, late last week. According to the decision, people who have visited either Romania or Bulgaria must submit to a 14-day quarantine upon arriving in Italy to curb the spread of the coronavirus COVID-19.

The news was first reported by Italian newspaper Gazetta dello Sport. 

“This measure is already in force for non-EU and non-Schengen countries. The virus is not defeated and continues to circulate. Great caution is still needed,” Speranza wrote on twitter.

The decision comes after Romania and Bulgaria saw a spike in COVID-19 cases in the weeks before the race. The surge in cases convinced the Alpecin-Fenix team of Mathieu van der Poel to skip the event entirely.

The decision means the August 11 is the earliest that Sibiu racers could return to competition in Italy, effectively eliminating them from four pro races: Strade Bianche (August 1), Gran Trittico Lombardo (August 3), Milano-Torino (August 5), and Milano-Sanremo (August 8).

The four-day Sibiu Tour concluded on Sunday, and the race was dominated by Bora-Hansgrohe, with Gregor Mülberger winning the overall ahead of teammate Patrick Konrad. Israel Start-Up Nation was the other WorldTour team in attendance, and its rider, Matteo Badilatti, finished third overall.

Three teams that participated in the Sibiu Tour are slated to participate in Saturday’s Strade Bianche: Bora-Hansgrohe, Israel Start-Up Nation, and Italian Pro-Continental team squad Bardiani-CSF-Faizanè.

That means no Strade Bianche for Bora-Hansgrohe riders Konrad, Mülberger, Andreas Schillinger, Michael Schwartzmann, Pascal Ackermann, and Selic Rüdiger, or for Israel Start-Up Nation riders Matthias Brändle, Rudy Barbier, Badilatti, Mihkel Räim, Guy Sagiv, or Daniel Turek.

The Bardiani riders impacted are Luca Covili, Nicolas Dalla Valle, Filippo Fiorelli, Iuri Filosi, and Matteo Pelucchi.

For Milano-Sanremo, the Italian team Vini Zabù-KTM is also impacted by the decision.