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by Shane Stokes
July 28, 2017
In today’s Daily News Digest: Cavendish still targeting Merckx record, also chasing Olympic gold in 2020; Dan Martin diagnosed with vertebral fractures; BMC Racing Tour de France team targets San Sebastian success; Tour de France runner-up Uran and Phinney confirmed for Colorado Classic; Lizzie Deignan, one year after whereabouts scandal; Professional riders’ association CPA votes to also represent female riders; Transcontinental Europe race begins on Friday, dedicated to Mike Hall; Car/cyclist ‘radar’ trialled in Adelaide; Video: Celebrating rider at GP of Beverly loses race victory and some skin
Having finished sixth overall in the Tour de France and being one of the most aggressive riders in the race, Dan Martin has ruled out aiming for success in the season’s remaining Grand Tour. “Definitely no Vuelta,” he told CyclingTips when asked if he was planning on riding the Spanish event.
Martin previously finished seventh and 13th overall in the race, and also won a stage in 2011. However rather than heading into another three-week event, he prefered a lighter programme and to wait until 2018 before his next Grand Tour.
However had he wished to ride the race, he may not have had any other choice but to miss it. On Thursday his team announced that a post-Tour examination had revealed two small transverse process fractures to his L2 and L3 vertebrae. “During the Tour I didn’t have any problems when racing, but off the bike I wasn’t feeling very comfortable,” he stated in a team release. “So this week I did a scan and got the news. It’s a real pity I won’t ride San Sebastian, because the legs were there and it’s a race I like. But fortunately this injury isn’t something to worry about.
“In order to tackle my future goals in good condition, it’s better to take a break and give the fracture time to heal. There’s nothing else I can do, just rest and then build up for the final part of the season.”
Reflecting on the Tour de France, he told CyclingTips that it has changed the way he looks at his career. “I have learned that I can be a contender next year. Coming into the race, nobody even mentioned my name, they didn’t see me as a podium contender or a contender for the yellow jersey,” he said. “I think I am leaving the race with a much bigger status, and a lot more respect from the rest of the peloton that I can actually take the yellow jersey one day all the way to Paris.”