Cyclists during the 107th Tour de France 2020, Stage 1, on Aug. 29. Photo: Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

The 107th Tour de France started its 2,156-mile journey around France on Saturday, around seven weeks later than its traditional July start time and amid a global pandemic that's currently worsening across Europe.

Why it matters: Though Tour de France cyclists have been germ-conscious for years now, health protocols for teams and riders have never been more important than this year's race, the Wall Street Journal reports.

How it works: Every team will consist of up to eight riders and 22 staffers, and all members must receive regular testing and remain sealed off from the outside world as they travel around the country.

  • Teams have been warned against giving autographs, dining at buffets and having roommates.

The big picture: France is currently experiencing a surge of new cases. The country reported 7,462 new cases on Friday, its largest single-day jump since May 16, according to Johns Hopkins University data.

  • Riders started the first stage of the race from the southern city of Nice. They're set to end in Paris on Sept. 20, though that is subject to change, the New York Times reports.

Go deeper

Dave Lawler, author of World
Oct 15, 2020 - World

Special report: Europe braces for monster 2nd coronavirus wave

Data: Our World in Data; Chart: Naema Ahmed/Axios

The pandemic has come storming back to Europe, and hope of a return to normality is being replaced by a much more ominous prospect: the return to lockdown.

The big picture: Case counts in countries like France and Spain have skyrocketed past the numbers seen during the spring peak. While that’s partially due to more widespread testing, it’s now clear that deaths are climbing too.

California to independently review FDA-approved coronavirus vaccines

California Gov. Gavin Newsom. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

California will "independently review" all coronavirus vaccines approved by the Food and Drug Administration before allowing their distribution, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) announced at a news conference Monday.

Why it matters: The move that comes days after NAID director Anthony Fauci said he had "strong confidence" in FDA-approved vaccines could cast further public doubt that the federal government could release a vaccine based on political motives, rather than safety and efficacy.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

  1. Politics: Trump says if Biden's elected, "he'll listen to the scientists"Trump calls Fauci a "disaster" on campaign call.
  2. Health: Coronavirus hospitalizations are on the rise — 8 states set single-day coronavirus case records last week.
  3. States: Wisconsin judge reimposes capacity limit on indoor venues.
  4. Media: Trump attacks CNN as "dumb b*stards" for continuing to cover pandemic.
  5. Business: Consumer confidence surveys show Americans are getting nervousHow China's economy bounced back from coronavirus.
  6. Sports: We've entered the era of limited fan attendance.
  7. Education: Why education technology can’t save remote learning.

Get Axios AM in your inbox

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!