By Alex Ballinger published
No riders have tested positive for coronavirus at the Tour de France after 841 tests were carried out during the rest day.
There were four staff members, all from different teams, who did test positive as well as one "technical service provide," with multiple reports suggesting it is race director Christian Prudhomme who has tested positive.
The staff members are from Ineos Grenadiers, Mitchelton-Scott, Cofidis and AG2R La Mondiale.
A joined statement from Tour organiser ASO and the UCI said: "The entire 'race bubble' was tested on September 7 and 8.
"A total of 841 tests were performed. No rider has tested positive for Covid-19 or is considered a contact case requiring quarantine. One staff member each from Cofidis, AG2R La Mondiale, Ineos Grenadiers and Mitchelton-Scott have tested positive and left the race bubble.
"A technical service provider has also tested positive and has left the race."
All riders and staff members were also tested in the five days before the Tour and will be tested again on the next rest day, September 14.
As part of the strict Covid-19 regulations at this year’s Tour, all teams had to undergo a nasal or throat swab test to check for the presence of the virus.
The tests were carried out a mobile medical unit in Pau on Sunday and Monday (September 6/7), with results then sent to the Tour’s chief medical officer who then passed them onto ASO and the UCI.
Teams were then informed before the start of stage 10 in Île d’Olèron.
A Deceuninck - Quick-Step staff member did have to be retested after a laboratory error, but has since tested negative and the team will race on as planned.
A statement from Deceuninck said: ““As you will have seen, it has been reported that a member of our team staff was collected from our team hotel this morning.
“An error was made in the laboratory with the sample that the individual gave yesterday, meaning they were taken for re-testing this morning.
“The result of this second test has been returned as negative and we will continue."
Ineos Grenadiers boss Dave Brailsford said he did expect positives from the rest day testing, but not within his team.
Some riders were more concerned about false positives from the tests, with Dan Martin saying it would be unfair to be sent home due to a false positive.
He said: “If you’ve got it it’s for the greater good that you have to go home. You have to 100 per cent understand that. But if you don’t have it and you just had a false positive and then you go home that’s not fair.”
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.
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