Tour de France could go ahead behind closed doors, says French minister

Colombian Egan Bernal won last year's Tour de France (PA Images)
11:47am, Thu 26 Mar 2020
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The 2020 Tour de France could happen without any crowds on the roads, according to the French Minister of Youth and Sports.

The road cycling season has ground to a halt since the coronavirus pandemic began to spread rapidly throughout Europe, putting some of the biggest races of the season in doubt.

And now minister Roxana Maracineanu has spoken about the possibility of  the Tour de France being 'behind closed doors'.

Speaking to French radio station France Bleu, she said: "The economic model of the Tour de France is not based on ticketing but on TV rights.

"During this period of confinement, everyone is being very careful and aware. Everyone understands that they have to stay at home, therefore watching television rather than attending any live events. 

"As a result, it wouldn't be too difficult to have to have to watch the Tour on television [rather than from the roadside]."

A number of key pillars of the cycling season have already been postponed such as the Tour of Flanders, Paris-Roubaix and the Giro d'Italia.

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Other alternatives for the Tour de France have come from the likes of former UCI President Brian Cookson, who told Cycling News the race could be reduced from three weeks to two to make room for the Giro, Vuelta a Espana and world championships.