Tour de l’Avenir cancels 2020 edition due to coronavirus

Premier U23 race cancels due to complexities ensuring health and safety.

Organizers of the Tour de l’Avenir have confirmed the 2020 race has been canceled.

The headline race of the U23 calendar has been abandoned for this year, with organizers citing difficulties ensuring health, safety, and race “bubbles” in an event drawing riders from around the world.

“It seems complex to scrupulously ensure that all health precautions are respected in the context of an event that was due to welcome 23 teams, most of them national selections from the European, African, Asian and American continents,” stated a press release Friday.

“The disparity in the health guarantees taken prior to the event, and the need for a “hermetic bubble” within these formations from regions of the world with different levels of awareness, risked affecting the absolute priority that must be given to health conditions.”

The French race, scheduled to go ahead August 14-19, had already been shortened from its typical 10 stage format to six days of racing as part of the UCI and French Cycling Federation’s move to pack as many races as possible into its re-scheduled post-coronavirus season.

Organizers confirmed they have already started planning the 2021 event with the intent to return to a full 10-day format. The race has proven a key testing ground for upcoming talent, with past champions including Egan BernalTadej Pogacar, and Nairo Quintana.