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Sport

Paris-Roubaix classic cancelled amid COVID-19 crisis: organisers

FILE PHOTO: The pack of cyclists stir up dust as they ride over a cobblestoned section of the Paris-Roubaix cycling classic in Quievy in northern France, April 8, 2012. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol

PARIS (Reuters) - Cycling’s Paris-Roubaix ‘Monument’ classic , which was due to be raced on Oct. 25, has been cancelled amid the COVID-19 crisis, organisers said on Friday.

The men’s and women’s races have been cancelled by local authorities following French health minister Olivier Veran’s announcement on Thursday that the Lille metropole was being placed under maximum COVID-19 alert.

France’s new daily COVID-19 infections were above the record 18,000 threshold for the second day on Thursday, while the number of people treated in hospital for the disease was up.

Paris-Roubaix, also known as “the Queen of the Classics”, was initially scheduled in April but was postponed because of the COVID-19 crisis.

“At the request of the Prefet du Nord, Prefet des Hauts de France and following Health Minister Olivier Veran’s announcement yesterday, that placed the Lille Metropolitan area on maximum alert, the 118th edition of Paris-Roubaix (UCI WorldTour) and the 1st edition of Paris-Roubaix Femmes (UCI Women’s WorldTour), originally scheduled to take place on the 25th October, will not be taking place,” organisers ASO said in a statement.

The next edition will take place on April 11, 2021, ASO added.

ASO also organised the Tour de France, which was held from Aug. 29-Sept. 20 after the race was postponed from its usual July slot.

The whole cycling calendar was reshuffled in April, with the Giro d’Italia, initially scheduled in May-June, having started last Saturday.

Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Toby Chopra and Christian Radnedge

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