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by Shane Stokes
March 10, 2018
Molard draws on local knowledge to win stage 6 of Paris-Nice; Roglic wins stage 3 of Tirreno-Adriatico, Thomas takes over race lead; Ryan lands first UCI win in the Drentse Acht van Westerveld; Poels rues missed opportunity after crashing out of Paris-Nice; Illness forces John Degenkolb to leave Paris-Nice; Kennaugh takes a break from racing due to health issues; MPCC anti-doping group extends membership to individual riders; New hour records set in Australia by Ogilvie and Davis; Specialized signs on to support USACrits.tv; Endura launches D2Z aero road clothing and convertible helmet; Video: Sagan’s humour emerges in bizarre answer; Video: Phil Gaimon’s “Disc Breaks” – Descending Rock Store AKA “The Snake” in Malibu
Using the race to build up for Milan-San Remo, a race he won in 2015, John Degenkolb planned to go deep all the way to the finish in Paris-Nice. Instead, the German rider was a non-starter on Friday’s sixth stage. His Trek-Segafredo team said that he had been suffering from bronchitis.
“You know, I really don’t like to abandon a race,” he said. “It’s not my style, it’s not who I am. To be honest, it was a very difficult decision, but with my big goals coming up, I cannot take health risks now.
“I hope to recover as quickly as possible. So, no worries, I will be able to “chase aces” in the upcoming Monuments.”
Part of the reason for his withdrawal was a desire to avoid taking chances in the remaining tough stages, particularly as there is a risk of bad weather. “John cannot lose any time in his recovery process, since the Classics are just around the corner,” said the team doctor. His team said that his race schedule is unlikely to change, and so Milan-San Remo should remain in his programme. However final confirmation will be made at a later point.
Also out of Paris-Nice with bronchitis is Nacer Bouhanni, who is also aiming for success in Milan-San Remo. He said via Twitter that he was ill. His team later stated that he was on antibiotics, but that it hopes he will compete in La Primavera.