Cycling Australia regrets to announce that due to illness, Richie Porte will not be at the start line for the 2018 UCI Road World Championships in Innsbruck, Austria.
Despite plans for the Vuelta a España to serve as a perfect preparation for the challenging Worlds course, illness in the last week of the Vuelta has persisted post event.
"I'm really disappointed to miss the road race. It was a big goal for me at the end of the season and I had been training and racing with the road race in mind. However, recent illness means my preparation has been far from ideal and for a race of this difficulty, with more than 4600metres of climbing, you need to have the best preparation possible to be up there. Within the Cycling Australia team, we have decided that it is in the team's best interests if my place goes to someone else. I wish the whole Aussie team the best and will be cheering them on from home."
BMC Racing Team Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Max Testa:
“Richie developed an upper respiratory infection towards the end of the Vuelta a España which has required him to take antibiotics and stop training. He will need a few more days off the bike to recover properly which means it does not make sense for him to line up at the Worlds Championships. Richie will resume training next week and will be able to race again this season.”
Australian Cycling Team Performance Director Simon Jones:
“No one is more disappointed than Richie, and he knows he won't be able to perform to his high expectations.
“The team has worked really hard behind the scenes to pull the game plan together, and we will regroup and refocus during the week ahead.”
Cycling Australia is considering its options with regards to a replacement for Porte in the team.
The UCI Road World Championships will take place in Innsbruck-Tirol (Austria), from 22 to 30 September 2018.
Just three weeks out from the 2018 Tour de France, Richie Porte (BMC Racing) has claimed his biggest season victory to date, the Tour de Suisse.
Biggest victory of my career!" Porte tweeted.
Porte finished more than a minute clear on the overall standings, sealing the overall victory after the final stage time trial won by his team-mate Stefan Küng.
"It's absolutely incredible. Winning the team time trial and then the guys did such a fantastic job all week and to win this race, it means a lot to me.
“I’m ready for the Tour de France. I did a good race here. I’m not at the top of my form just yet so I am excited for July.”
“Before this race, I hadn’t raced since Tour de Romandie. I was at home for the birth of my son two weeks ago and I’ve only had one night at home with him so, I think it’s great for me to get to go home for a bit of time before a training camp and then hopefully I’ll be better at the Tour de France.”