Gorka Izagirre appeals cycling ban as Spaniards face €3000 fines

Spain has banned all outdoor activity for two weeks as the country tries to halt the spread of coronavirus

Gorka Izagirre has asked Spanish authorities to clarify whether professionals can train outside after their government banned riding outdoors for two weeks this weekend.

The two-week state of emergency has ordered everyone to stay indoors and those caught riding outside can be stopped by police, fined and even arrested.

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Canadian Katie Hudson, who lives in Barcelona, was sent a photo by a friend showing two cyclists being stopped by police, adding fines can range from €500-€3000 for unnecessarily being outside.

Cyclists stopped in Barcelona (Katie Hudson/Twitter)

This government decree extends to professional athletes, despite authorities saying people are allowed outside to complete their work, which training rides technically are.

Astana rider Gorka Izagirre has asked for clarification on the issue so that he can continue training for whenever racing does resume.

“We are in contact with the ACP (Association of Professional Cyclists) and from there we are told whether we can go outside because it is our profession. But we don’t have any official document that guarantees us anything,” Izagirre said, as reported in AS.

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“Some of our team has left yesterday to train in Benidorm and the Civil Guard has sent them home. They have told them they need an official letter from the team and so we have gone to the ACP to see if they can give us any support so we can go out.

“I was going to train for an hour and a half on Sunday as the weather was great but seeing how the situation is I didn’t out. We can’t spoil our form at this time of year. But I think that in the first days we will not have it easy until all this about permits and the legal issue is clarified,” Izagirre said.

Former Spanish pro Pedro Delgado agrees with Izagirre, saying there should not be an issue if riders are training alone, adding “it would be a real disaster for your performance compared to other countries.”

In Italy, the Inner Ring has said pros are allowed to train as normal but have to carry their licence and paperwork in their back pocket.

Professional riders aside, cycling has experienced a massive uptake in New York as commuters avoid the subway, instead opting to utilise the Citi Bike bike-share scheme.

The New York Times reports trips over the past week have exceeded half a million, nearly double the number during the same period in 2019.

Bike crossings over the four East River bridges that connect Brooklyn and Queens with Manhattan have also doubled.