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by Shane Stokes
March 16, 2018
Pacioni wins final stage of Tour de Taiwan, Arashiro takes overall; Van Garderen motivated to repeat past success in Volta a Catalunya; Past winner Degenkolb and teammate Nizzolo to miss Milan-San Remo; EF Education First-Drapac row in behind Modolo for Milan-San Remo; Critérium du Dauphiné route announced, features prologue, TTT and four summit finishes; Team Sky/Wiggins case could bring welcome – and powerful – changes to UK law; Opinion: Knighting Bradley Wiggins so early was just asking for trouble; Wolf Tooth RoadLink gets direct-mount option; Video: Sagan Loves the New Turbo Vado; Video: Phil Gaimon’s Worst Retirement Ever Short – Training for Cancellara – Mandeville Canyon KOM
John Degenkolb said at the Tour of Dubai that he hoped to be back in the same Classics form that earned him the Milan-San Remo and Paris-Roubaix titles in 2015, but he has been forced to abandon the first of those twin objectives.
He abandoned the recent Paris-Nice after stage five due to bronchitis. He’s still suffering the last traces of the illness, and so has had to scratch from the race. “It is with a heavy heart I have to cancel my start at Milan-San Remo as I am still fighting this sickness and wouldn’t be fit for the Primavera,” he said. “I am feeling already better in the last days and will be back on my bike soon. So, no worries for the rest of the Classics season. I wish my team the best for Saturday.”
Also out is teammate Giacomo Nizzolo, who withdrew from stage four of the Tirreno-Adriatico due to anterior knee pain. Although the team worked hard with him to try to get it right for Saturday’s Classic, they have run out of time.
“I am very, very disappointed that I cannot start Milan-San Remo,” the Italian said. “It was the biggest goal for me for the first part of the season. So not to start is really sad for me. We decided not to start because the knee pain has improved but not enough, and we don’t want to take any risk for the rest of the season. It’s a long race, and it can make more damage.
“Now we will do everything we can to fix the problem as soon as possible and look forward. I wish all the best to my teammates, and I will be supporting them from in front of the TV.” The team will feature Jasper Stuyven, Fabio Felline, Koen de Kort, Boy van Poppel, Kiel Reijnen, Ryan Mullen and Gregory Rast.