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Hello again, CyclingTips readers.
As another week comes to a close, another major race has been called off and a WorldTour team is facing uncertainty.
CCC has cut staff as well as reducing rider pay, and the team is reportedly staring down an uncertain future as its sponsor company looks into pulling out of its contract.
Meanwhile, the Tour de Suisse has joined the long list of races that have been officially cancelled. On the bright side, organizers have already announced a digital race that will be held at the end of this month on the Rouvy platform.
Speaking of which, are you planning to watch the virtual Tour of Flanders on Sunday?
Here’s to the weekend. Stay safe, readers.
| Tour de Suisse cancelled
The Tour de Suisse, which was scheduled to run from June 7 to June 14, has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. Beyond the “great uncertainty” of whether a large outdoor sporting event could take place in June at all, organizers noted that acquiring sponsors and selling hospitality packages has been “almost impossible,” and that “staging the event would result in substantial financial losses.”
The decision to cancel now, organizers said, increases the likelihood that the race would return as planned in future seasons. “In 2021 the Tour de Suisse should take place with very few changes from the plans for this year’s event,” organizers said. “Discussions are in full swing with all host cities and the TdS organization is confident that planning will be finalized soon.”
| CCC makes staff cuts, faces uncertainty
The CCC team, whose roster includes the likes of Greg Van Avermaet, Ilnur Zakarin, and Patrick Bevin, has joined the list of pro outfits making major financial cuts amid the coronavirus crisis, and now faces an uncertain future.
On Friday, the team confirmed media reports that most of the team staff have been told that their contracts have been cancelled, while Het Laatste Nieuws reports that riders have taken an 80 percent pay cut. Beyond those cuts and reductions, however, Sportowe Fakty reports that the founder of Polish footwear company CCC, the team’s main sponsor, is looking into pulling out of the contract that funds the team as his company faces serious financial shortfalls.
Elsewhere in the pro peloton, French ProTeam B&B Hotels-Vital Concept finds itself in a similar situation, with France TV Sport reporting that team manager Jérôme Pineau fears he may have to shut down the team without the ability to offer sponsors any visibility in races.
| Race director: The Vuelta’s dates are what they are
Amid reports that the UCI is discussing the possibility of rescheduling the Giro d’Italia for August and potentially shortening the Vuelta a España, Vuelta director Javier Guillén says that the Vuelta will happen as planned, from August 14 to September 6.
According to AS, Guillén said that “right now, the dates for the Vuelta are what they are and we are not considering, in any case, a race of fewer than 21 stages, just like it is planned.”
| 100% producing PPE eyewear
San Diego-based brand 100% is producing PPE (personal protective equipment) eyewear for emergency and medical personnel in several cities across the United States amid the COVID-19 crisis.
“It started with a few of our employees getting calls from friends and family members requesting protective eyewear,” 100% CEO Ludo Boinnard said. “What these brave men and women are doing to protect all of us is truly heroic, and we’re honored to be able to contribute to keeping them safe.”
| Giro Sector: New performance off-road kicks
Giro Sport Design has announced a new off-road shoe model with men’s and women’s versions available, the Sector. These feature a one-piece stitch-free and breathable upper and twin Boa L6 micro adjustable dial closures.
There’s a carbon-composite sole while a new dual-injected tread is claimed to be extremely durable and not suffer from the delaminating issues (something that plagued previous Giro off-road shoes). The Sector in a 42.5EU size is quoted at 684g a pair, a rather competitive weight for a shoe intended for gravel and XC riding. The new Sector and Sector W retail for US$225, available now.
In case you missed it
| Choose Your Own Bike Race: Tour of Flanders
If you can’t watch the real Tour of Flanders this weekend, you can at least enjoy your very own race experience …
| Niner launches new strapless bags for its own gravel bikes
As Dave Rome reports, Niner has unveiled a new range of well-priced bags specifically designed to fit MCR and latest-season RLT gravel bikes.
Today’s featured image of Egan Bernal and Rohan Dennis at the Tour de Suisse comes from Cor Vos.