Tom Pidcock won’t race again until the mystery stomach problem that has blighted the start of his Classics campaign is solved, his coach has said.
The Ineos Grenadiers rider was forced to pull out of Strade Bianche before failing to finish Milan-San Remo this past weekend, dropped on the Capo Berta with under 40km to go in the first Monument of the 2022 season.
“It wasn’t a stomach bug, but Tom had to go to the toilet seriously,” Kurt Bogaerts told Het Laatste Nieuws of his rider’s uncomfortable Milan – San Remo ride in no uncertain terms. “Even afterwards, his stomach did not feel one hundred percent healthy. There was no point in racing further.”
After pulling out of Strade Bianche, Pidcock went home to the UK to rest up before completing an altitude training with no problems, leaving his team curious as to what the root of the issue is.
“Maybe because you have to fuel a lot in such a long race? The strange thing is that he doesn’t really feel sick,” Bogaerts continued about the confusion of how Pidcock’s problems returned at the 300km-long Italian one-day race.
“We are not going to make a race schedule until this problem is solved.”
Instead, the 22-year-old will undergo blood tests to try and understand what his problem is, and his participation in Dwars door Vlaanderen on March 30 is now in doubt.
Six weeks after completing a cyclocross campaign that culminated in a rainbow jersey at the Worlds in Fayetteville, the Brit began his road season at Volta ao Algarve, not finishing the Portuguese stage race before placing 18th at Omloop Het Nieuwsblad and 70th at Kuurne-Brussels-Kuurne.
Meanwhile, his cyclocross rival Mathieu van der Poel returned to racing at Milan – San Remo after an injury lay-off lasting five months, albeit for two cyclocross races over the Christmas period. The Dutchman returned in flying form despite low expectations, finishing third behind Bahrain-Victorious’ Matej Mohorič and TotalEnergies’ Anthony Turgis.