A few days before her big departure from Irun, the Vuelta unveils a great innovation that will be implemented on Tuesday. The traditional signature podium will be abandoned for this edition, in favor of a facial recognition test that the riders will have to pass each morning before taking their place on the starting line.
Movistar in the game
“Following the health crisis situation caused by COVID-19, the Vuelta has decided to eliminate the signing process that usually takes place at the start of each stage, indicates the press release published on Friday. To avoid physical handling of the paper and pen, this year, thanks to Movistar, the procedure will be performed using facial recognition technology. “
🇪🇸 😃 La Vuelta aplicará el reconocimiento facial de la mano de Movistar para evitar la firma física de los corredores.
🇬🇧😃La Vuelta will apply Movistar’s facial recognition technology to avoid making the riders provide physical signatures.# LaVuelta20
– La Vuelta (@lavuelta) October 16, 2020
Before being a cycling team, Movistar is a mobile operator, and it will thus “identify people without contact, keeping a safe distance”. It is also said that the algorithm will display runner data and measure body temperature, reminding runners to avoid handling a pen and potentially transmitting the virus to themselves.
A shortened route
This Tuesday, the 176 starters will set off from the Basque Country, alongside the third week of the Giro d’Italia, for just under three weeks of racing (reduced to 18 steps), especially after the cancellation of the Portuguese stages. The final finish will be judged in Madrid on Sunday 8 November.