Great news for cycling fans, as ASO confirmed today that this year's Etape du Tour will go ahead.
The 2020 edition of L'Etape du Tour will now take place on Sunday 6 September in Nice, one week after the rescheduled Grand Départ of this year's Tour de France.
Riders who are unable to take part on the new date may transfer their entries to the 2021 edition, or enter another ASO event in 2020 or 2021 via the voucher scheme announced by ASO earlier this month. If neither option suits, entrants will be eligible to receive a full refund of their entry fee.
"With the Grand Départ of the Tour de France taking place at the end of August, the organisers and the Ville de Nice held a meeting concerning the organisation of the Étape du Tour de France in order to be able to communicate a new date to the numerous participants patiently awaiting its confirmation," reads a statement on the Etape website this evening.
"As initially planned, the Étape du Tour de France will be the weekend following the Grand Départ, meaning that this year it will be taking place on Sunday 6th September 2020. The Étape du Tour de France will follow the same route as the second stage of the Tour de France, Nice-Nice.
"The organisers are closely following the evolving situation and will be respecting any directives from the health authorities, with whom they are working hand in hand.
"The riders who are unable to make the new date of September 6th will have the opportunity to choose between participating in the 2021 edition or taking part in another A.S.O. event in 2020 and 2021. The practical information will be communicated to all participants by mid-July."
Coronavirus disruptions had cast doubt over whether this year's Etape would go ahead at all. A statement from ASO on 5 June led many to believe that this year's edition had been cancelled entirely.
However, the organisers have managed to secure a new date for what is arguably the world's most prestigious sportive cycling event.
The 2020 edition will see two firsts for L'Etape: the first coastal route and the first loop, as riders tackle stage 2 of the Tour de France route. Riders will face a 177km course with an elevation gain of 3,570m in the Alpes Maritimes range that provides the city with its spectacular backdrop.
16,000 riders are expected to take part in L'Etape du Tour, making it one of the world's biggest as well as best-known sportives. The 2020 edition starts and finishes in Nice - a real bonus for riders, avoiding the logistical headache of transferring to and from distant start/finish points.
The course features two key climbs, the Col de la Colmiane (1500m) and the Col de Turini (1607m), with a third challenge - the Col d'Eze - lying in wait at the 100-mile mark.
Entries to this year's Etape du Tour sold out within hours of opening. To be first to hear about news of next year's Etape, sign up to free email alerts from Sportive.com.