Italian cycling clothing company Santini has announced it will switch to making masks during the coronavirus pandemic.
Santini, which designs and makes kits for WorldTour teams and amateur riders, is based in the city of Bergamo in the Lombardy region, which has been heavily affected by Covid-19.
Italy has the highest number of coronavirus patients outside of China, with 41,035 confirmed cases.
Deaths from the virus in Italy have also overtaken the number of fatalities in China, as 3,405 people have died compared with 3,248 in China.
Paola Santini, marketing manager of Santini, told Bergamo News (opens in new tab): “From the beginning we asked ourselves as entrepreneurs what we could have done.
“We are ready to produce 10 thousand masks per day. We receive many requests, but the priority will be addressed to Bergamo and its province, because we see the difficulties of our hospitals.”
Santini has approached another Bergamo company Sitip, which supplies waterproof and breathable fabrics, and worked up a prototype mask.
That mask is now ready for production and Santini are waiting for the go-ahead from Milan, with manufacture ready to begin on Monday (March 23).
Santini sponsor WorldTour teams Trek-Segafredo and Boels-Dolman as well as a number of national cycling teams including the Australian squad.
Founded in 1965 by Pietro Santini, the company started by making clothes by quickly switched to cycling apparel, inspired by Pietro’s love of cycling.
Made in Italy, Santini clothes are now worn by pro and amateur road cyclists, as well as triathlons and runners.
Leisure cycling in Italy is currently banned due to the coronavirus outbreak, in part to prevent the spread of the virus but also to reduce the burden on healthcare services caused by any crashes or injuries.
Riders are allowed out of the house for essential journeys like food or medical care, but anyone riding their bike recreationally faces a fine.
Thank you for reading 10 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Alex Ballinger is editor of BikeBiz magazine, the leading publication for the UK cycle industry, and is the former digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter, then as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output, and now as the editor of BikeBiz. Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) Alex covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers. Away from the desk, Alex can be found racing time trials, riding BMX and mountain bikes, or exploring off-road on his gravel bike. He’s also an avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.
Extinction Rebellion stages anti-Shell protest at British Track Champs
Two people carried a banner through the stands at Newport's Geraint Thomas National Velodrome
By Vern Pitt • Published
60% of motorists unaware of Highway Code changes, one year after introduction
Charity Cycling UK has called on the government to raise awareness of the updates
By Tom Davidson • Published