CT Cycle Tour update: Coronavirus protocols, introduction of e-bikes
Cape Town is gearing up for the world's largest individually timed cycle race on Sunday as the Health Department confirms the first confirmed case of Covid-19.
John Maytham gets an update from Cape Town Cycle Tour director David Bellairs (and info on the historic introduction of e-bikes).
Bellairs says protocols are in place both at the Expo and on the route.
We have facilities at each of the water stations where patients can be isolated in the event of them presenting with symptoms, so that they can then be taken off for testing. But at this point we've been advised there's no call by either provincial, national or the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) to call off any major event.David Bellairs, Director - Cape Town Cycle Tour
He says nine riders from Italy have withdrawn - one from a red zone and a party of eight.
We will only know on Saturday how many of the others who haven't advised have pulled out. Something that does get a little skewed on stats is we have 28 riders from Italy participating, but we know for a fact that five of those are resident in South Africa, from the diplomatic corps.David Bellairs, Director - Cape Town Cycle Tour
An advisory has been sent to all international entrants with a questionnaire which indicates when it would be advisable to either get medical advice before heading to South Africa, or when to consult a doctor if already in the country.
We have also warned all inbound participants that they will be checked at points of entry and there is a possibility if anybody is presenting with symptoms that they will be quarantined and held up for two days while tests are being done.David Bellairs, Director - Cape Town Cycle Tour
So there's a high probability that anybody presenting may not actually make the cycle tour because they're going to be quarantined before they can get into the country.David Bellairs, Director - Cape Town Cycle Tour
International numbers are significantly down this year he says, with a drop from the average 3,000 riders to a figure of 2,500 at the moment.
We've been advised by the NICD that the implementation by national government at points of entry, they believe to be more than sufficient... So, at what point do you start shutting the borders and not letting anybody into the country?David Bellairs, Director - Cape Town Cycle Tour
Bellairs also confirms that e-bikes are being allowed on the route for the first time on Sunday.
It's a trial. It's about making cycling more accessible which sounds like a contradiction in terms because e-bikes are so expensive, but we do know there are a lot of people who for medical reasons can't ride 109 kilometres.David Bellairs, Director - Cape Town Cycle Tour
These riders will not be timed or placed, but will receive a certificate of participation.
For more detail, take a listen (skip to 5:05 for e-bike info):
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