• Philippe Gilbert and Caleb Ewan during Paris-Nice 2020 (Getty)Source: Getty
The cancellation of racing due to the coronavirus pandemic has left 25 Lotto Soudal staff members unemployed and the team's riders and other staff with a pay cut.
Cycling Central

Lotto Soudal
30 Mar 2020 - 8:34 AM  UPDATED 30 Mar 2020 - 9:00 AM

Lotto Soudal's 27 riders plus management and administrative staff volunteered to waive part of their wages until racing starts again in "solidarity" with staff and sponsors. 

"This decision was taken without discussion and with unanimity. It was clear to everyone that particular circumstances require particular team actions," the team statement read. 

The team's mechanics, soigneurs, physiotherapists and bus drivers have been forced to become temporarily unemployed and the contracts of its self-employed personnel suspended.

But the team says all can lean on Belgium's bridging financial support which is not just for the fully unemployed.  

In just one month, more than one million people in Belgium have registered as temporarily unemployed. 

The 10-hour, 300km De Gendt and De Buyst tribute to Milan-San Remo
No Milan-San Remo? No worries for Thomas De Gendt and Jasper De Buyst.

The classics will happen, just later in the year

Meanwhile, Lotto Soudal star Philippe Gilbert told Cyclingnews he believes the classics will happen later in the year. 

"It's going to be different but beautiful."

"For riders it's hard because we obviously had all that momentum and we'd worked so hard," said the Belgin whose main goal this season was Milan-Sanremo.

"I was physically ready and after Paris-Nice I did my best training. I was ready for a great Milan-San Remo and the other races."

"It's hard to say when we can race again. Of course I hope it's as soon as possible. The world is crazy at the moment and it's hard to predict anything."