Tom Dumoulin says cycling calendar could be permanently redesigned after coronavirus

The Dutch Grand Tour star sees the opportunity to reshape the season

(Image credit: Pro Shots/Sipa USA)

Tom Dumoulin was anticipating a much simpler 2020 season.

The Grand Tour star suffered a turbulent year in 2019, after a prolonged knee injury derailed his ambitions.

Dumoulin then came into the new season fully fit and with a new team, Jumbo-Visma, before his luck ran out once again.

After he was forced to miss his first scheduled race of the year, the Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana after he was diagnosed with stomach parasites, the global coronavirus crisis upended the entire cycling calendar.

It is currently unclear when pro racing will return, but Dutchman Dumoulin does see an opportunity to redesign the season.

In an interview with Belgian broadcaster Sporza, Dumoulin said: “I had high expectations, but this year has not brought any luck so far.

“This is a crazy situation. I came from a rotten year and had high hopes for 2020 – now we are going full throttle after knee injury.”

Dumoulin says it is unlikely the Tour de France, his major goal for the year, will go ahead on its scheduled date, but he says it could be moved closer to the Vuelta a España, while the Giro d’Italia could be run to overlap with one of the other Grand Tours.

The 29-year-old also suggested that the cycling calendar should be extended to mid-November with the spring Classics held in the early October or early November, with the World Championships in its usual spot of late September.

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He added: “I think every season should move on for a month. In mid-November, the weather here in Belgium and the Netherlands is often fantastic, whereas in mid-February we sometimes still have snow.

“If we extend the season to November, we can start a month later in 2012 and continue that in future. That seems fantastic to me.”

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Alex is the 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 and now as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output.

Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) and joining CW in 2018, Alex has 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 journalism, Alex is a national level time triallist, avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.