The Tour de France can continue as planned for the time being. All 165 riders who took a corona test on the rest day turned out not to be infected. However, four members of staff are positive, just like Tour boss Christian Prudhomme.
The tension in the Tour de France this morning was almost comparable to that during an uphill finish. Yesterday, the organizer ASO had used the first rest day to take a corona test from the 165 remaining riders and all staff.
The results of those tests were to be announced this morning and so we had to wait and see. The strict rules of the Tour and the French government dictate that if there are two positive tests on a team, the whole team must go home, even if it concerns two members of staff who have no contact with the riders.
Moreover, it was also an “exam” for organizer ASO to see if they succeeded in keeping their “bubble” free from corona. Some doubts about this had arisen during the last mountain ride. On the last climb, a lot of supporters were close to the riders and some did not wear a mouth mask.
4 personnel infected
This morning one by one rumors seeped in about teams heading for the start and thus seemed to have the right to start for the tenth stage. For a moment there was a fear about the Belgian team Deceuninck-QuickStep. The bus driver had to be retested there. In the end he turned out to be negative too.
Shortly after noon, the French newspaper L’Equipe reported that the 165 riders still in the race had tested negative. So everything seemed fine, until suddenly reports surfaced about staff members who were infected. ASO confirmed a little later that indeed one staff member of the teams Team Cofidis, AG2R La Mondiale, Ineos Grenadiers and Mitchelton-Scott had tested positive each time. They have been sent home. One employee of the organization also tested positive… and Christian Prudhomme, the big boss of the Tour, also turned out to be infected. He is in quarantine for a week. A total of 841 corona tests were taken. Everyone will be tested again on September 14, on the second day of rest.