Ryder Hesjedal (Trek-Segafredo) has been forced to abandon the Giro d’Italia. The Canadian was sitting 14th at 4:48 in the overall behind race leader Andrey Amador (Movistar) and started stage 14. However, he pulled out midway through the queen stage having lost contact with the main field in the mountains due to illness.
Hesjedal won the Giro d’Italia in 2012 and moved to Trek-Segafredo in the winter having ridden for Cannondale in 2015.
Trek-Segafredo later released a statement that said Hesjedal was suffering from pharyngitis (inflammation of the pharynx) and tracheitis (inflammation of the trachea).
The quote from Hesjedal read, "Definitely not how I envisioned it, but it's how it goes. It has already been since Monday that I wasn't feeling very good, but every day I have been trying to get through it, and I had seemed to be getting through, so I kept pushing. But today the body was not responding and I felt pretty bad all over.
"It's unfortunate. I definitely don't want to leave the Giro like this, but sometimes it's out of your control. You can't just make things happen if it's not possible. I'd say it's a cyclist's speciality is suffering and pushing beyond what is capable most times.
"I think it will take a while for this to sink in, and I am sure I will reflect more later," Hesjedal continued. "I will try and not get too upset, but it is not easy. It's how it goes – I will have to deal with it. Life goes on."