April 28, 2020 / 4:08 PM / a month ago

Tour de France may have to limit number of spectators at start - ministry

PARIS, April 28 (Reuters) - The Tour de France may have to make arrangements for limiting the number of spectators in order to comply with a ban on major events gathering more than 5,000 people before September, as it starts late August, the French sports ministry said.

Prime Minister Edouard Philippe said on Tuesday that following the end of a nationwide coronavirus lockdown on May 11, major sporting and cultural events bringing together more than 5,000 participants cannot be held before September.

Philippe did not specifically mention the Tour de France, which has been postponed to Aug. 29-Sept. 20 from its original June 27 start date.

“It is too early to say (how this will impact the Tour) but for now this does not imply a postponement nor a cancellation, but it does not rule out arrangements notably in terms of number of spectators,” a sports ministry spokeswoman said. (Reporting by Geert De Clercq; Editing by Alex Richardson)

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