EF Pro Cycling has written to the UCI asking for the Giro d’Italia to be stopped on the second race day because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The US WorldTour team sent a letter to cycling’s international governing body requesting the Italian Grand Tour be halted after stage 15, to prevent further spread of the virus, Eurosport reports.
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Covid-19 continues to fuel uncertainty at the Giro d’Italia, as three riders have left the race after catching the illness while two teams have pulled out due to safety concerns.
In the letter, addressed to the UCI, Giro organiser RCS, and other teams, EF said: “It would be better for the Giro and the UCI World Tour…(if) this be done in a systematic, holistic way versus a chaotic withdrawal on a team by team basis.”
The team also asked that more testing be carried out before the second rest day on Monday (October 19) and that the race be cancelled sooner if more positive tests are returned.
But the UCI has already denied the request, saying that all involved are ensuring the race stays as safe as possible.
UCI president David Lappartient said: “We now face a challenge to finish the season and this can be achieved by continuing this spirit of collaboration and unity in professional cycling.”
Pre-race favourites Simon Yates (Mitchelton-Scott) and Steven Kruijswijk (Jumbo-Visma) have already left the race after testing positive for coronavirus, along with Sunweb sprinter Michael Matthews.
Mitchelton-Scott also had four staff members diagnosed with Covid-19 which resulted in the team pulling out of the race after the first rest day, along with Jumbo who also withdrew due to health concerns for their staff and riders.
Further testing is due to be carried out on Thursday and Friday this week, the UCI said, while EF Pro Cycling said they will leave if they have one positive test.