Visma | Lease a Bike faces crisis as Uijtdebroeks is forced to leave the Giro unexpectedly Cycling

Visma | Lease a Bike faces crisis as Uijtdebroeks is forced to leave the Giro unexpectedly

Visma | Lease a Bike faces crisis as Uijtdebroeks is forced to leave the Giro unexpectedly

Cian Uijtdebroeks will not start in the eleventh stage of the Giro. This was announced by Visma | Lease a Bike in a post on X. The leader in the youth classification is too ill to continue in the Italian stage race. And this comes just as he said he was beginning to recover...

The news about the upcoming DNS of the amiable Flemish rider comes as somewhat of a surprise. After the completion of stage ten - held on Tuesday - Uijtdebroeks mentioned feeling slightly ill and consequently lost some seconds on the final climb. Nevertheless, he looked forward with hope to what was coming. "It was already a tough day and I was positioned too far back, but I felt that I was not entirely healthy. To put it that way," was his initial statement afterwards.

Uijtdebroeks, after losing time on Tuesday, still held much hope for the brutal Giro weekend

"I hope I can recover from this and that this was the bad day," Uijtdebroeks continued. "There's something going around in the peloton, so I hope it doesn't worsen. But I believe I am on the mend. The rest day was the low point, so things were already improving. The next few days are relatively easy, which should help me recover further. Then come the big days over the weekend, so I need to make sure I'm back in form then."

Apparently, nothing could have been further from the truth, as became clear Wednesday morning. "The Giro will continue without the biggest smile in the peloton," stated the tweet. "It's with heavy hearts we announce that Cian has to withdraw from the race. He's been feeling unwell the past few days, and his condition worsened after Tuesday's stage. We wish him a quick recovery."

Visma | Lease a Bike sees two main riders drop out in two days

In a video sent to the cycling press, team manager Marc Reef also speaks about losing the classification rider. "We decided on Wednesday morning to pull him from the race. Naturally, it felt like a huge disappointment, especially since we had just seen Olav (Kooij, ed.) drop out the day before. After Olav's stage win, we thought we had everything to fight for again."

"So much can change in two days," Reef continues. "Suddenly, we're in a situation where our two main assets are gone. We had big goals with them. It's a major setback for everyone. We have been working towards this Giro for months and now find ourselves in this situation. It's really a huge disappointment. But there are still eleven stages to go, and we have four healthy guys left in the race. They will give it their all and are ready to go all out. They, too, have been preparing for weeks or months. With these guys, we'll aim for stage success. In that regard, we believe in our chances," he concludes on a hopeful note after a rather disheartening message.

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