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 organizers of the Tour de Suisse and the ROUVY Indoor Cycling Reality platform to bring racing to fans everywhere while respecting the global restrictions on everyday life as a result of the COVID19 pandemic.
Trek-Segafredo riders will get on their Saris Smart 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, with riders represented by 3D avatars wearing their team kit and riding their own team’s bikes.
Invitations to participate have been sent to all teams due to race in this year’s Tour de Suisse, scheduled for June.
Each team will have three riders and their live data – speed, power, cadence – will be on display, continuing the pioneering work done by Velon in partnership with the world’s most prominent race organizers, broadcasters, and digital platforms over the past four years. Some of the riders will use webcams so viewers can see their faces as they push out the watts.
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 view and start times will follow, along with team line-up announcements. Viewers in Switzerland will be able to watch live on the national broadcaster, SRF.
I have great memories from Tour de Suisse, including a stage win in 2013 and a 2nd, 3rd, and 5th place in GC. I love riding in the mountains and on Swiss roads. I was looking forward to racing again, but obviously this is uncertain at the moment.
To stay in shape and keep competitive form, I am riding a lot of hours on our Saris Smart Trainer, but I've never actually participated in a virtual race. It seems like a great way to stay fit and test my condition against other pro riders. See you online!"
I think it's a great idea for the riders to keep motivated and have a goal that is similar to an actual race. At present, no racing is taking place, and in some countries, you can't even ride outside, so many of our riders are training indoors on smart trainers. For our team, Tour de Suisse is a great, important race, and hopefully, this year's edition will not be canceled. I'm Swiss, so for me, it is the best race in the world."
Sport Director Grégory Rast