The world’s top professional cycling teams are preparing to do battle against each other next month in “The Digital Swiss 5” – a series of five individual races on parts of the same parcours planned for the Tour de Suisse 2020.
Velon is working with the organisers of the Tour de Suisse and the ROUVY Indoor Cycling Reality platform to bring racing to fans everywhere whilst respecting the global restrictions on everyday life as a result of the COVID19 pandemic.
The Deceuninck – Quick-Step riders will get on their “smart” Tacx trainers for five races over five consecutive days and go all-out over some of the most challenging parts of the Tour de Suisse parcours. The ROUVY platform uses real video footage of the roads and riders are represented by 3D avatars wearing their team kit and riding their own team’s bikes.
Invitations to participate have been sent to all teams who are scheduled to race in this year’s Tour de Suisse, which is due to take place in June.
Each team will have three riders and their live data - speed, power, cadence and heart rate - will be on display, continuing the pioneering work done by Velon in partnership with the world’s biggest race organisers, broadcasters and digital platforms over the past four years. Some of the riders will have webcams on them so viewers can see their faces as they push out the watts.
The riders’ bikes will be connected to “smart” trainers, which have surged in popularity as the COVID19 virus has forced millions of people to stay at home. The trainers pair with the platform and the riders watch the course and their position on their monitor in real-time. As the profile of the course goes uphill and downhill, the trainer automatically applies more or less resistance.
The races, each lasting approximately one hour, are scheduled for Wednesday 22nd April - Sunday 26th April. Fans will be able to watch live on Velon and the teams’ social media channels. More information about how to watch and start times will follow, along with team line-up announcements. Viewers in Switzerland will be able to watch live on the national broadcaster, SRG.
“I was really looking forward to riding my first Tour de Suisse this year, and while it is completely understandable and correct for it to be postponed under the circumstances, it is still upsetting. To be able to ride on a Tacx trainer and still compete and interact with fans is fantastic, as well as a great way for riders to gauge their fitness and condition while staying safe and healthy”, said Irish Champion Sam Bennett about this project.
Velon offers unrivalled access to the best professional cycling teams in the world. Velon is owned by: BORA-hansgrohe; CCC Team; Deceuninck – Quick-Step; EF Education First; Lotto Soudal; Mitchelton-SCOTT; Team INEOS; Team Jumbo-Visma; Team Sunweb; Trek-Segafredo; UAE Team Emirates.
The Czech company ROUVY is one of the most popular providers of indoor training software solutions in the cycling community. ROUVY distinguishes itself from other providers thanks to realistic representations of the track simulations. These are based on real video recordings of the routes. Besides a variety of existing routes like the Furka Pass, the Stelvio or other cycling classics, ROUVY also offers a wide range of virtual events for the benefit of its user community.
Key information about The Digital Swiss 5
○ Wednesday April 22 - Sunday April 26 (start times tbc), one race per day, each race duration approximately 1hr
- Participating teams
○ BORA-hansgrohe, CCC Team, Deceuninck - Quick-Step, EF Education First Pro Cycling, Lotto Soudal, Mitchelton-SCOTT, Team INEOS, Team Jumbo-Visma, Team Sunweb, Trek-Segafredo, UAE Team Emirates
○ Others to be confirmed
○ Each team will have three riders
○ Each race will be on the ROUVY Indoor Cycling Reality platform: https://rouvy.com/en/ and will take place on routes scheduled to be used in the Tour de Suisse 2020: https://www.tourdesuisse.ch/en/
- How to watch
○ Each race will be streamed live on Velon’s Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/veloncc
○ You can also watch on each participating team’s Facebook page○
More details about how to watch to follow.
Photo credit: ©Tim De Waele / Getty Images