Bevin out of Tour Down Under due to cardiac arrhythmia

New Zealand time trial champion Patrick Bevin (CCC Team) at the 2019 Tour de Romandie
New Zealand time trial champion Patrick Bevin (CCC Team) at the 2019 Tour de Romandie (Image credit: Getty Images)

CCC Team's Patrick Bevin will miss next week's Tour Down Under after experiencing an irregular heartbeat during training for the event in Adelaide.

The New Zealander was admitted to the Calvary Wakefield Hospital in Adelaide as a result, and was immediately treated for the condition. According to his team, he's expected to make a full recovery, and to begin his racing season in the near future.

"Patrick does not have a history of heart problems," said CCC Team chief medical officer Dr. Max Testa in a press release. "However, an electrocardiogram detected an episode of supraventricular arrhythmia. Fortunately, this is a non-life threatening condition and is quite common, but it did require immediate treatment to regulate the heart rhythm.

"Thankfully, Patrick experienced this episode whilst with the team, and we were able to treat the arrhythmia immediately," Testa continued. "We will continue to monitor his recovery and run further tests as a precaution. However, as we are less than a week out from the race, Patrick will not be in a position to line up at the Santos Tour Down Under. Patrick will return to New Zealand, where we are confident he will make a full recovery and will be able to resume his racing program shortly."

Bevin had won a stage and was leading last year's Tour Down Under when a crash on the penultimate stage prevented him from defending his lead the next day, despite starting the final stage. The title instead went to Mitchelton-Scott's Daryl Impey, who won the stage race for the second year running.

"It's disappointing to miss the race after preparing all off season for it, and especially after coming so close to the win last year," Bevin said. "I was looking forward to returning and trying to repeat my success. However, it's definitely a case of better being safe than sorry, and the timing has made it impossible to race here in Adelaide.

"I feel completely fine now, and it's now just a matter of rest and recovery to ensure it doesn't happen again. With the solid block of off-season training in my legs, I'm confident I can still have a strong start to the season one month later than planned," Bevin said.

Guillaume Van Keirsbulck will now fly out from Europe to Adelaide as Bevin's replacement for the Tour Down Under, the team has reported.

"Obviously, this is an unexpected change to my programme," Van Keirsbulck said, "but I'm looking forward to starting my 2020 season in Australia. I've raced the Santos Tour Down Under once before, in 2016, and really enjoyed the racing and the atmosphere."

CCC Team for the 2020 Tour Down Under: Josef Černý, Simon Geschke, Joey Rosskopf, Szymon Sajnok, Guillaume Van Keirsbulck, Francisco Ventoso, Łukasz Wiśniowski

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