It’s not the first (HERE), and it won’t be the last. Given the mid-race cancellation of cycling’s UAE Tour this week, it’s probably not a surprise that the ITU have today announced the postponement of next week’s World Triathlon Abu Dhabi, the first scheduled event in the 2020 WTS Series.
WTS Abu Dhabi 2020 postponed due to the Coronavirus outbreak
The International Triathlon Union, in consultation with the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, has taken the decision to postpone the 2020 ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi Paratriathlon World Cup and Abu Dhabi Mixed Relay event as a precautionary measure to reduce the spread of 2019-nCoV Coronavirus.
The event was due to take place from March 5 to March 7 in Yas Island, in Abu Dhabi, where some cases were reported in the last few days. Although the Abu Dhabi authorities are working on measures so that the safety of all the athletes, coaches and officials participating in the event is the main concern, due to the new World Health Organization recommendations and the spread of the virus, ITU and the Abu Dhabi Sports Council have jointly agreed to postpone the event.
ITU, the local organizing committee and Abu Dhabi Sports Council are looking at possible dates for relocating the event later on in March or April.
Around 300 elite athletes and more than 2500 age group athletes and scholars were planned to toe the start line in all the different WTS Abu Dhabi events next week. All participants will be immediately informed of the postponement, and will be advised of the new dates as soon as agreed.
Travel restrictions and quarantines imposed by some countries and airlines for individuals and groups travelling from or to areas affected by the outbreak make it impossible to go ahead with the event in the planned dates, but all stakeholders are working tirelessly against the clock to find a new date to host the event.
The whole World Triathlon Family, including our athletes, coaches, officials, staff and volunteers, consider the WTS Abu Dhabi one of the most outstanding events in the calendar and we all want to continue to work together to provide an excellent event for all athletes to shine and for Abu Dhabi to show their excellency organizing sport events.