The organisers of the Healthy Ageing Tour have launched a crowdfunding campaign in the hopes of bringing live coverage of the race to fans.
Scheduled to take place over three stages in March, the women’s 2.1-ranked stage race in the Netherlands can go ahead despite the coronavirus pandemic, but with no spectators allowed at the race.
The 2021 edition, from March 10-12, will be held entirely on closed circuits with no public allowed, ensuring the safety of everyone competing in and working on the race.
But as a result of the strict Covid-19 measures, the race will not reach any cycling fans without a live stream to accompany the action, prompting the organisers into asking cycling fans for their support in broadcasting the race.
The race management are trying to reach their €9,500 (£8,160) target to provide a live stream of the event, which will feature a number of Women’s WorldTour teams including Trek-Segafredo, Movistar and Canyon-SRAM.
The organisers said: “Between 10 and 12 March 2021 we are organising the Healthy Ageing Tour: a multi-stage event for the world-class riders in women’s cycling. The three stages will take place on corona-proof courses, unfortunately without an audience. It took a lot of effort to get the green light. And financially these are hard times. To make it possible for as many fans as possible to follow this top event, we are setting up this campaign to gather enough funding for a livestream. This allows everyone to follow the races at home. Every bit helps.
“We need at least €9,500, but anything above this amount helps to secure the future of the Healthy Ageing Tour.”
So far the campaign has raised €1,500 thanks to 45 donors, but there is still a long way to go.
The race will be run in a strict coronavirus bubble, according to the organisers, with all riders and staff having to test negative for the virus in the 72 hours prior to the start of the race.
Riders will all stay in a holiday park where each team will have two houses to themselves, and each person will have their own bedroom.
Meals will be provided by the teams themselves and there will be no congregating at meal times.
The race jury, organisers and media will be tested daily.
Previous winners of this race include Lisa Klein in 2019, Lucinda Brand in 2015, and Ellen van Dijk on three occasions.