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Wellens cyclo-cross season suffers major setback

By:
Greg Johnson
Published:
September 17, 2009, 10:37 BST,
Updated:
September 17, 2009, 2:40 BST
Edition:
First Cyclo-cross news & racing round-up, Tuesday, September 22, 2009
Bart Wellens (Fidea)

Bart Wellens (Fidea)

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Belgian’s hopes hit by virus

The cyclo-cross season is only a week old, yet the hopes of a strong winter for Bart Wellens have already been dashed with the rider suffering from a virus. Blood tests have revealed the rider has cytomegalovirus, from the same family as epstien-barr and varicella-zoster.

"After the training camp in August at St. Moritz, for the following two weeks since he feels very tired,” a Telenet-Fidea team representative told Sporza.be. “He felt like that at the first cyclo-cross in Erpe-Mere Sunday."

"A comprehensive blood analysis confirmed the presence of cytomegalovirus, a’ brother’ of glandular fever," said the team.

The virus will leave 31-year-old unable to train, let alone compete, for several weeks. The news comes as a blow to Wellens, who was hoping for a strong start to the cyclo-cross season.

"We follow Bart constantly to determine when he can start training again," said the team.

Wellens, the star of his own Flemish reality television series Wellens en Wee, has won the International Cycling Union (UCI) Cyclo-cross World Championship on two occasions.

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