France’s sport minister has said no final decision has been made on the postponement of Paris-Roubaix 2021, but the race would still be delayed.
On Wednesday (March 24), a report in French newspaper Le Parisien said that the 2021 edition of the ‘Hell of the North’ had been postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic, but race organiser later said no official decision has yet been made.
On Thursday, the French sports minister Roxana Maracineanu provided an update on the fate of the race to FranceInfo.
Maracineanu said: “Let it be clear that this is a department where the health status is problematic.
“There is no final decision, but perhaps the race will be postponed. The local prefect has already said there is a possibility of postponement.”
According to a report in Le Parisien, the cobbled Monument, scheduled to take place on April 11, had been postponed because of the coronavirus restrictions in the north of France.
The report said that the French Ministry of Sports and Ministry of Health have been holding talks to discuss the race, which was not held last year because of the pandemic.
Le Parisen said the race could be rescheduled at the end of the 2021 season, potentially on Sunday, October 24 or Sunday, October 31.
But race organiser ASO then told French newspaper L’Equipe that it is not expecting an official decision until next week, and that the current expectation is that the race will go ahead in April.
The organiser said it is also looking for ways to drastically reduce the number of spectators at the side of the road.
France is dealing with a third wave of coronavirus, as its vaccination programme lags behind other European nations.
Last week, the French government put a month-long lockdown in place in Paris and parts of northern France in the hopes of slowing the spread of the virus.