The BinckBank Tour is no longer going through the Netherlands this week. According to the municipalities of Sittard-Geleen, Terneuzen and Vlissingen, it is impossible to organize stages due to the corona measures announced this week.
The riders would complete a time trial of 11 kilometers in Vlissingen on Wednesday. On Friday, a 195.4 kilometer hilly stage with Sittard-Geleen as the finish place was scheduled.
The organization of the BinckBank Tour is now going to see whether Friday’s ride can be held in an adapted form in Belgium. The planned time trial is canceled anyway. Wednesday is therefore considered a rest day for the peloton.
A new starting location is being sought for Thursday’s ride, which would start in Philippine in Zeeland and end in Aalter in Belgium. Saturday’s final stage takes the peloton completely through Belgium and does not seem to be in danger.
‘It was a painful, but necessary decision’
The cabinet announced on Monday that in the three weeks from last Tuesday 6 pm in the Netherlands, no public will be welcome at competitions in amateur and professional sports. Due to the new measures, it is no longer feasible for the municipalities involved to organize journeys.
“It was a painful, but necessary decision to prevent the spread of the virus,” said Mayor Bas van den Tillaar of the municipality of Vlissingen in a first reaction to the scrapping of the stages in the Netherlands.
The BinckBank Tour started on Tuesday with a flat stage of 132 kilometers. The Belgian Jasper Philipsen sprinted to victory and can call himself the first leader in the general classification.
Jasper Philipsen won the first stage of the BinckBank Tour on Tuesday. (Photo: ANP)
Unsure whether Amstel Gold Race will continue
The new corona measures in the Netherlands may also have consequences for the Amstel Gold Race. The WorldTour race, which could not take place in April due to the corona crisis, is now scheduled for Saturday 10 October.
“It is not yet certain whether the Amstel Gold Race will continue,” said race director Leo van Vliet Sporza. “We submitted our plans last week, both at the UCI and at the national and local level. It looked like everything would be approved, but Monday’s news has put everything in jeopardy again.”
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