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Colombian cycling champion Bernal recovered from COVID-19

Giro d’Italia champion Egan Bernal said he has recovered from Covid-19 and is already back in training.

“We want to tell you that we’re now free of COVID-19,” the 24-year-old wrote on Instagram on Monday.

He and girlfriend Maria Fernanda Gutierrez tested positive for coronavirus on June 4, less than a week after his triumph in Italy.

Both suffered only mild symptoms but they had to delay their return to Colombia where a series of celebratory events had been planned.

Before he returns home, though, he said he will meet Pope Francis at the Vatican on Wednesday to take him “a present from all Colombians.”

Bernal has been isolating at his European base in Monaco since testing positive for Covid.

He stormed to Giro victory in May after dominating the first two weeks of the race, before holding off spirited resistence from Briton Simon Yates and Italy’s Damiano Caruso in the final few days.

Bernal burst onto the scene in 2019 by winning the Tour de France, cycling’s most prestigious race, even beating his Ineos teammate and then-reigning champion Geraint Thomas into second.

In doing so he became the first Latin American to win the race and, at 22, the youngest champion since 1909.

Despite his youth, Bernal has already matched Colombia’s most successful cyclist in major tours. Nairo Quintana won both the Giro and Vuelta a Espana, but has never finished higher than second at the Tour.

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