Jones abruptly leaves Giant-Alpecin, ready for “next step” in life

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American Carter Jones and Giant-Alpecin have agreed to part ways and terminate Jones’ contract as of July. Jones is the second American to leave Giant-Alpecin in as many months after Caleb Fairly retired after the Amgen Tour of California.

“It is a personal decision related to two accidents, one last year and one recently, and I am now ready to move on to the next step in my life,” Jones said in a team release. “I have spent two great seasons at Team Giant-Alpecin, and they have provided me the opportunity to compete in many races at the WorldTour level.”

Jones is housemates with fellow American and Giant-Alpecin rider Chad Haga in Girona, Spain. Haga was involved in the horrific team training accident in January and it is unknown whether this affected Jones’ early retirement.

Jones spent three years on Axel Merckx’s stellar development team from 2011-2013. His tenure on the team culminated with the King of the Mountain’s jersey at the 2013 Amgen Tour of California.

Jones signed with the U.S. continental outfit Optum p/b Kelley Benefit Strategies for 2014 and the skinny climber let loose, winning the Tour of Gila. He continued his strong form in California weeks later with 11th overall and sixth on the stage finish atop the hors categorie Mount Diablo. Later that year, he cracked the top-10 at the USA Pro Challenge with an eighth place finish in the general classification and signed with Giant-Alpecin for the 2015 season.

The results have been few and far between for the 27-year-old since his showed his climbing potential in 2014. Jones recently finished the Critérium du Dauphiné but then was a non-starter on the second stage of the five-day Ster ZLM Toer.

“Carter has been a valuable member of the team, and we respect his decision,” coach Rudi Kemna said. “Carter’s dedication and professionalism cannot be faulted, and it has been a pleasure to have worked with him. We want to thank Carter for his commitment to the team, and we wish him all the best in his future endeavors.

Unlike most pros, Jones has a college degree to fall back on. “I have to thank my family for expecting me to complete my college education before fully pursuing a cycling career, Jones said. “Now I will use my degrees in integrative physiology and sociology from the University of Colorado, as well as the experience I have gained as a cyclist, to transition to a career off the bike.

“Through my experience as a cyclist I have developed an interest in sports marketing and event production, which I hope to pursue further.”

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