British Cycling has extended its suspension on sanctioned cycling events, the governing body announced on Thursday.
Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, BC has decided to go beyond its current June 30 end date with much uncertainty still surrounding the resumption of normal life and mass gatherings and events.
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The extended “rolling” suspension will run on three fronts: International and national level races, including national series and championships will not be able to go ahead until September 1, regional racing and non-competitive events will be suspended until August 1, and sanctioned club and group events until July 4. The suspensions apply across England, Scotland and Wales, though may be adjusted depending on devolved government guidelines.
BC says it will review the changes every fortnight and give six, four, and two weeks’ to each of the respective categories if there are any changes or if events can resume.
Regional racing and non-competitive events has a closer end date than international and national races because of “shorter travel distances, fewer event personnel involved and the expectation that they will attract lower spectator numbers,” BC said.
It also said paticular outdoor disciplines, potentially individual time trials for instance, could return earlier “if the format allows the safety of all to be managed appropriately” and if “measures can be put in place to manage the risk in line with Government guidance and any guidance that we put in place.”
Cyclists across Britain are currently allowed to ride their bikes outside recreationally, with those in England and Scotland allowed to take unlimited activity. Those in Wales are continued to ask to stay local but can ride outside.
BC says it will next month release guidelines on what its staged approach to a full resumption of events will look like.
“We appreciate that these are challenging times for many within our sport and while there will be differing views from our membership we want to reassure everyone that our overriding principle is to work within Government guidelines and to respect people’s safety,” a BC statement said.
“We are also mindful that the public health guidelines are likely to differ in each home country and we are working hard behind the scenes with our colleagues at Scottish Cycling, Welsh Cycling, Sport England, UK Sport, within Government and those in other sports to develop clear guidance and plans to gradually return to activity.
“We plan to publish next month guidelines on what a staged return to all forms of activity might look like. This is a changing situation but we are committed to updating all those who care for our sport as often as we can and with as much information as we can.”