PETRONAS LE Tour de Langkawi 2020 organiser Human Voyage, gave its assurance that all necessary steps will be taken to ensure the health and safety of riders, officials and the race entourage bound for the 25th edition of the race which starts in Kota Kinabalu, next week.
As such, teams, riders and officials flying into Malaysia from China for LTdL 2020 will be given top priority and are subject to health screening and quarantine by the health and airport authorities.
This comes in the wake of the Wuhan novel coronavirus (2019-n-CoV) outbreak over the past week.
Chief Operating Officer, Shahaizereen A Hamid said Human Voyage has established collaboration with the Ministry of Health over the matter to ensure that no stones are left unturned.
Out of the 22 teams slated for LTDL 2020, two are from China, namely Hengxiang Cycling Team and Giant Cycling team.
“Riders, officials and media representatives from China arriving at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport or the KLIA are subjected to a detailed health scan by officers from the Ministry of Health to detect any symptoms and ensure that they are free from coronavirus.
Apart from teams from China, riders and teams arriving from other parts of the world for the Tour will also be monitored to detect any virus-related symptoms.
“We are working hard to ensure that the Tour will be free from any doubts following the virus outbreak. We are taking all everything in our jurisdiction to ensure that the race will run in a safe environment,” said Shahaizereen.
Other steps considered including providing face masks and vaccination to the whole race entourage in collaboration with the Ministry of Health.
On race preparation, Shahaizereen reiterates that it’s all systems go and teams are expected to arrive a few days ahead of the race proper for acclimatisation.
“We’re in the last phase of our preparation. I’m happy that we’re on the right track as we look forward to a smooth race. We urge all fans and spectators to come out in big numbers and show your support at the start and finish venues as well as along the routes,” he said.
In the meantime, Hengxiang Cycling Team has announced their withdrawal from taking part in this year’s race due to concerns over the outbreak of the coronavirus.
However, organisers Human Voyage remained confident that the absence of the team from China will not affect the quality of the race where a suitable replacement will be announced soon.
The 8-stage Jubilee edition is scheduled from 6 to 15 February 2020, covering a total distance of 1095.7km across 9 states which include Sarawak, Terengganu, Pahang, Federal Territories (Putrajaya and Kuala Lumpur) Selangor, Perak , Penang and Kedah.