Tour champion Pogacar and UAE Emirates mates first team to get COVID-19 vaccine


FILE PHOTO: Cycling - Tour de France - Stage 21 - Mantes-la-Jolie to Paris Champs-Elysees - France - September 20, 2020. UAE Team Emirates rider Tadej Pogacar of Slovenia celebrates on the podium, after winning the general classification and the overall leader's yellow jersey. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe

(Reuters) - Tour de France champion Tadej Pogacar and his UAE Emirates team mates has been vaccinated against COVID-19 at a training camp in Abu Dhabi, the team said on Friday.

"The riders and staff of the Tour de France 2020 winning team UAE Team Emirates have taken the UAE Ministry of Health & Prevention approved COVID-19 vaccine developed by Sinopharm CNBG," UAE Emirates said in a statement.

"A total of 27 riders, including the Tour de France 2020 winner Slovenian cyclist Tadej Pogacar, plus 32 staff have now received the vaccine."

They are the first professional cycling team to be vaccinated.

Among those vaccinated was Colombian Fernando Gaviria, who last October became one of the rare patients to have had the disease twice.

The pandemic forced the 2020 cycling season to shut down for four-and-a-half months before resuming in August, with Pogacar ending up winning the Tour in September.

(Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Robert Birsel)

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