VeloClub is CyclingTips’ membership program which brings us closer to our members, and connects likeminded cycling enthusiasts.
by Matt de Neef
November 28, 2016
In today’s edition of the CT Daily News Digest: Cant, van der Poel victorious in Zeven CX World Cup; Von Hoff, Garfoot win the Stan Siejka Classic; UCI rebuffs plans to reduce team sizes in big races; Lachlan Morton set to make his WorldTour return at the 2017 Tour Down Under; Peter Velits announces his retirement; UniSA-Australia to be the only wildcard team at the 2017 Tour Down Under; American Justin Oien completes Caja Rural-Seguros roster; Lizzie Williams on her battles with mental illness; A sneak-peek at Bahrain-Merida’s jersey for 2017; Michael Matthews set to appear on Slovak TV; Argy bargy in the Flandriencross.
With several teams folding at the end of this year there aren’t as many spots for riders in 2017 as there have been in the past. The latest rider to fall foul of this situation is Slovakian Peter Velits, who has announced his retirement.
The 31-year-old has raced with BMC for the past three seasons, but was told this year that his contract wouldn’t be renewed. He spoke to a few top teams but wasn’t able to secure a ride for next year. Rather than stepping down a level or two, Velits made the decision to hang up his wheels.
“At the beginning of last season I traded managers with my brother Martin, and they did what they could. But it did not work. I know that they were trying different options,” he told TASR. “Discussions were held but after two bad seasons, it was difficult. In terms of downgrading, I don’t think I could find the necessary motivation, and it would be even worse.
“My closest family knows my feelings. The situation being as it is, we survived a lot as a family; we want to share the joy of success and now accept the decision simply as a fact.”
Velits burst onto the scene in 2007 by winning the U23 road race world title, earning him a two-year contract with Milram. He’s since ridden with HTC/Highroad/Columbia, Omega Pharma-Quickstep and BMC and was a three-time member of the world TTT title-winning team.