Garmin-Sharp rider Nick Nuyens started the Ster ZLM Toer with the hopes of slowly working his way back into competition following a minor surgery to correct a cardiac arrhythmia, but the third stage proved to intense for the Belgian, and he had to abandon.
"Today was a hellish stage, where the speed was particularly high," Nuyens said to Het Nieuwsblad. He expected that he might have to drop out at some point because he is yet to get back to full strength following the June 10 procedure. "I still on medication after that surgery, and the drugs put a clear brake on my performance. That in itself is no surprise, because that doctors had warned me. "
"Maybe I wanted to see results too quickly," he said. "Today I had hoped for a quiet start. However, it was completely different, with war from kilometer zero."
Nuyens will try again in the Halle-Ingooigem, and compete in the Belgian Championships, but acknowledged that any chance of being on Garmin's team for the Tour de France is gone.
"I'll be watching the Tour de France on TV. I would definitely like to make something of the autumn."