COVID-19 vaccination required for racing in France

Athletes set to race in France in 2022 will need to provide proof of vaccination.

A law enacted Monday by the French parliament excludes unvaccinated people from all restaurants, sports arenas, and other venues. Enforcement of the new health regulation is expected to begin on January 24th.

The law requires all athletes and spectators who use public buildings to be vaccinated but does not specifically address outdoor spaces, however, CyclingTips indicates this law may have a greater impact on multi-day events and stage races.

The newly passed law updates the French Health Pass, which required either proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test.

The new legislation means that a negative COVID test is no longer sufficient.

Exceptions will no longer be granted for non-French athletes, and CyclingTips reports that the French health ministry stated the new proof of vaccination requirement “applies to everyone, to volunteers and to elite sportspeople, including those coming from abroad, until further notice.”

Early season road races in Australia — such as the Santos Tour Down Under and the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race —were largely canceled in an attempt to stem the pandemic on the island nation.

Pro tennis star Novak Djokovic grabbed the headlines in recent days as he was refused entry to Australia to compete in the Australian Open tennis tournament. Djokovic had previously stated that he had an vaccine exemption, but officials revoked his visa as they deemed it was not valid.

Djokovic lost his latest appeal against the Australian government’s decision and was deported. Questions remain about his eligibility to play in the French Open, later in 2022.

In the United States last week, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed an executive mandate for large businesses to require either proof of vaccination or frequent negative COVID testing by all employees. Healthcare workers in the U.S. are still required to show either proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test result.