Cycling: Team Emirates trio withdrawn from Vuelta a Burgos due to COVID concerns

(Reuters) - Colombian riders Sebastian Molano, Cristian Munoz and Camilo Ardila were withdrawn from the Vuelta a Burgos after coming into contact with an individual who tested positive for COVID-19, the UAE Team Emirates team said on Wednesday.

The trio completed the first stage on Tuesday but are not participating in the second stage which started in Castrojeriz.

"The three Colombian athletes on Saturday had been in recent contact with a person who turned out to be positive for COVID-19 (on Tuesday)," the team said in a statement here.

“Following the protocol of the team and the (cycling’s world governing body) UCI, the three riders were isolated, sent home and will all undergo another test. All three riders returned two negative tests in the days prior to the race.”

UAE Team Emirates did not name the person who tested positive.

On Tuesday, Team Israel Start-Up Nation withdrew two riders -- Alex Dowsett and Itamar Einhorn -- before the start of the race due to coronavirus concerns.

Einhorn had come in contact with team mate Omer Goldstein, who is not competing in Burgos but returned a positive test this week. The team later said Einhorn’s test had come back negative.

Bora-Hansgrohe’s Felix Grossschartner surged past the rest of the field on the final climb to win the opening stage as the cycling season resumed after a four-month hiatus due to the pandemic.

Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru, editing by Pritha Sarkar