World Juniors latest to succumb to coronavirus threat, remainder of races canceled

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Hours after the cancellation of what would have been the final races of the women’s World Cup season in Are, Sweden, the organizer in Narvik, Norway announced the remainder of the FIS Alpine World Junior Championships will also be canceled.

A news release from the organizer on Wednesday stated: The Chief Municipal Doctor in Narvik, Sverre Håkon Evju, has made the decision to cancel the remainder of the Alpine Junior World Championships.

“We have come to a situation where the number of corona cases has nearly doubled in the space of 24 hours and the virus has attained status as an international pandemic. Even though we have kept to all guidelines, and we are in an area where there is not a single confirmed case of a person infected by the virus, we have chosen to cancel,” said Sverre Håkon Evju, who is also the Doctor of the Championships.

There are over 300 athletes in the Championships from a total of 40 countries.

“We wish to point out that we are not doing this because we have cases of corona infection. We are doing this precisely because we have no cases of corona infection,” he added.

Erik Plener, leader of the local organizing committee, supports the decision.

“It is a wise decision and it is better to be safer than sorry. It is better to cancel while the athletes still have the possibility of travelling home – rather than having 500 people in quarantine for 14 days,” he said.

The remaining races — men’s giant slalom, women’s and men’s slalom, and the mixed parallel team event — are not expected to be rescheduled.