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.
Armed with their Elite smart trainers, CCC Team’s riders will gear up 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.
Former Swiss road race champion Michael Schär is looking forward to connecting with fans in the virtual race.
“I like the idea of ’The Digital Swiss 5’ as a way for riders to interact with fans. This way of online racing is something new and I’m looking forward to seeing how the stages are raced. I am excited to take part and race on some of my training roads. It will be interesting to feel the difference between road racing and virtual racing. Ever since online training became more popular, I have been participating; mostly to stay fit during the cold Swiss winters but also to ride with recreational riders and help motivate each other,” Schär said.
Each team will have three riders and their live data – speed, power and cadence – 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. Full details on how fans can watch will be announced soon. Viewers in Switzerland will be able to watch live on the national broadcaster, SRF.
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