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Bicycle Racing News and Opinion,
Tuesday, May 5, 2020

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2019 Tour de France | 2019 Giro d'Italia

Don't gamble; take all your savings and buy some good stock and hold it till it goes up, then sell it. If it don't go up, don't buy it. – Will Rogers

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First quarter earnings reports mixed for public companies in bike industry

Bicycle Retailer & Industry News posted this update:

The financial effects of the COVID-19 pandemic didn't come to North America until very late in the first quarter. But for public companies active in Asia and Europe, the situation still impacted their Q1 reports. 

•Garmin Ltd. total revenue increased 12% in the quarter with its fitness division, which includes Tacx smart-trainer sales, growing 24%. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Garmin said it will withdraw its 2020 guidance until the economy and consumer behaviors are better understood.

•MIPS increased 25% in the first quarter year-over-year, despite some supply chain issues for helmet makers who produce in China, and a premature end to the ski season. Max Strandwitz, MIPS' president and CEO, said the company is bracing for a deep recession that will decrease demand for helmets.

•Sales in Shimano Inc.'s bike product division were down 15.4% from the same period last year, while operating income in the division declined 26.1%. The company said sales in Europe and North and South America "declined sharply" in the middle of March. Shimano withdrew its forecast for the remainder of the year.

•Thule Group sales in the quarter dropped 4.9%, which the Sweden-based brand attributed to the pandemic that either closed or limited retailers in Europe and North America. The company said sales in the Americas sales were down 13%, currency adjusted. Like in Europe, the company said, North American sales "dropped significantly" in mid-March. The closure of some major sporting goods retail chains, including REI and Dick's, likely contributed.

You can read the entire report here.

Grand Tours could happen over just 71-day period - leaked UCI schedule

Eurosport posted this:

Cycling's three Grand Tours could take place in a whirlwind 71-day period in the autumn according to a leaked schedule drawn up by the UCI World Tour.

The cycling calendar has been decimated by the global impact of coronavirus, with racing put on hold since March as countries bring in distancing measures in an effort to stop the spread.

The Tour de France has been provisionally moved to a start date of 29 August, two months later than originally scheduled, though an announcement last week by the French government that there will be no professional sport in the country before September has cast doubt on its viability, with a number of high-profile figures from the sport speaking out against the prospect of holding the Tour without spectators.

Tour de France map

Really, who knows when the racing will start? The Tour starting in late August? I think it Unlikely.

Now an unofficial plan, leaked to the Spanish newspaper AS, has set out a likely race schedule for getting this season's events completed once the global restrictions on movement begin to ease.

With uncertainty still surrounding plans for lifting restrictions, and with national governments responding uniquely to the changing circumstances in their own countries, the schedule as mapped out can be little more than provisional, with no consensus existing either within countries or across borders on a roadmap to return to normal life.

Should, however, the leaked plan go ahead as AS suggests is probable, racing would start with Strade Bianche on 1 August, and the Tour de France’s postponed start in Nice on 29 August remains in place.

You can read the entire story here.

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