Egan Bernal missed more than 8 minutes in defense of their Tour de France title on Sunday.© AFP
Last year’s winner Egan Bernal has withdrawn from the Tour de France, his Enos team said on Wednesday, when the young Colombian broke out of controversy and complained of back trouble. The 23-year-old Colombian effectively watched his dominant defense on Sunday, the first big mountain platform, when he slipped more than eight minutes at the pace. “This is clearly not how I wanted to end my Tour de France, but I agree that this is the right decision for me under the circumstances,” Bernal said in a team statement.
Jumbo rider Primoz Rojic is ahead of Wednesday’s Stage 17 ahead of fellow Slovenian Tadze Pogakar in the race.
“We made this decision with Egan’s best interests,” said Dave Brilsford, principal of the Ineos team.
“Egan is a true champion who loves running, but he is also a young rider who has many tours ahead and at this point, on balance, we think it makes sense for him to stop racing.”
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