Dear Dreiländergiro Family,
if you come across this statement, you are probably already informed that the Dreiländergiro 2021 cannot take place locally. This decision has also taken an incredible toll on us and we too are disappointed that the Dreiländergiro cannot take place. However, we are already in the process of reactivating our optimism and drive and hope that we will all soon be able to look to the future with more confidence. It will take some time until we are all ready. Until then, we would like to make it easier for you to understand our decision, at least with a detailed statement.
Even though the cancellation of the Dreiländergiro was very difficult emotionally, the decision was very clear from an objective and rational point of view. At this present time, there are neither optimistic forecasts nor reliable indicators that we will be allowed to hold the Dreiländergiro in June. Even more unclear is who, under what conditions may participate with us.
The paradox of this difficult situation is that precisely our greatest strengths become our greatest downfall. The Dreiländergiro is best known for its great field of participants and the unique cross-border experience. Our field of participants is not only great - it is also very international. 89% of the participants are not from Austria and travel to us from 39 nations. You can imagine that the entry requirements are different in each country and it is impossible for us to estimate them. One of our biggest core values is not to exclude anyone from participating in the Dreiländergiro because of their origin. Imagine that the Dreiländergiro takes place, but you are not allowed to participate because your place of residence is located in a risk area. That would be an absolute no-go not only for you, but also for us.
We also encounter the problem of internationality in the approval process. The three countries all have different entry requirements and different covid measures. Even if it were possible in the foreseeable future to obtain the event permits with the associated restrictions, it confronts us with a tremendous task to harmonize the respective regulations. It is very unrealistic that Austria agrees to a mass start with 3000 participants. However, the massive expansion of the starting field changes the overall length of the event. This, in turn, would affect the security arrangements and partial closures in the three countries and directly affect the entire emergency forces of all three countries. They would probably be reluctant to agree to all these changes and would not unreasonably respond with countermeasures. These in turn would have to be coordinated with Austria, etc. This example illustrates the complexity of the tri-national issues we face in times of a pandemic.
We have developed concepts and contingency plans for all these scenarios. We can assure you that we would be more than willing to take on the planning and organizational effort. What led us to cancel, however, was the extreme uncertainty involved. If we now put all our eggs in one basket and get the execution underway, it means in concrete terms that we will be spending a lot of money. Not just any money, but your money. If the event cannot take place, we would not be able to refund your money. That is not an option for us. With your registration you have also given us your trust. A trust that we will handle your entry fee responsibly and offer you an unforgettable experience. For this we are infinitely grateful to you year after year and will therefore not abuse this trust under any circumstances. In addition, we would endanger the continued existence of the Dreiländergiro and thus also break the great promise that we made 3 years ago to the then organizing committee.
So why didn't we just decide to move the date for the Dreiländergiro 2021 further back? Believe us - this consideration was also very prominent in the discussions and was rolled up and down by us. In the end, we came to the same conclusions - responsibility and uncertainty. If we schedule the replacement date too early, the risk of Covid restrictions remains. If we plan a date at the end of the season, the icy temperatures at 2757m altitude can give us a rough time.
Long story short - we simply do not have enough information to decide in good faith to take this big risk. Will you be able to enter the country? Do you have to be vaccinated? Will (enough) accommodations be available to offer you all a bed? Will you be able to travel through the three countries without any problems? Will we be allowed to feed you? And last but not least - will we be able to offer you the safe and beautiful experience we promised you?
We hope this statement will at least make it a little easier for you to understand our decision. We promise you that we will use all our strength and resources to offer you the most spectacular Dreiländergiro comeback ever in 2022!
Under no circumstances will we simply give up in 2021 and put a mark behind the Dreiländergiro. We will join you all on June 27, 2021 and create a great program even from a distance to celebrate cycling properly. Until then, we pass on our biggest goal to all of you - Enjoy and promote cycling! Keep the motivation high and spread the enthusiasm for cycling!