Nairo Quintana has secured his fellow Colombian pros the right to train outside after making a direct request to the Colombian Government.
Quintana was on Instagram Live with Ernesto Lucena, the Minister of Sports, which ended with Lucena making a commitment that all riders who carry a UCI licence would be allowed to train on the road. This special dispensation follows Colombia last week allowing people to exercise outside for one hour a day.
“The idea is that only professional cyclists who have a UCI licence will be able to go out to train and it will be up to the mayor in each municipality to create their own regulations,” said Lucena.
Quintana is a hugely popular and well-known figure in his country and often throws his support behind social issues and campaigns. Recently, he donated one of his pink jerseys from the Giro d’Italia as an initiative from the mayor of Tunja, a city around 100km north-east of Bogota, raised over £2 million for local hospitals.
“Nairo has been a great voice for all of them (cyclists) and they will be able to train again because it is their job, they make their livelihoods from that and they give joy to Colombians. The request from Nairo has been heard,” Lucena added.
Each municipality will set their own rules for riding, with the mayor of Zipaquirá authorising five riders, including Ineos’ Egan Bernal and Brandon Rivera, to train outside as long as they try to prioritise their rides between 5am and 8am in the morning while maintaining a distance of five metres.
Bernal had self-isolated after returning to Colombia from his European base in Andorra before testing negative for coronavirus.
Some countries around the world are slowly lifting lockdown measures, with France planning to bring its strict lockdown to a close from May 11, with cyclists allowed back onto the roads for the first time since March.
Rides can be undertaken without a time limit, within 100km of your home, and with no more than 10 people, with cyclists also required to stay at least 10m apart.
Pro riders, such as Bernal’s team-mate Chris Froome who lives near Nice, are allowed to resume high-intensity training outdoors but must ride on their own and respect social distancing.