Theo Bos enjoyed the sweetness of victory more than four months after he claimed his last one [stage 1 of the Ster ZLM Toer] but his win in stage 2 of the Tour of Hainan was mostly a way to overcome the negative feelings he’s gone through after he was denied a start at the Vuelta a España.
“My morale went down after what happened at the Vuelta,” Bos told Cyclingnews in Haikou. He was a non starter at Villanova de Arousa in Galicia after a UCI pre-Grand Tour test revealed what his team called “sub-optimal health conditions” on August 24.
Under UCI rules, he could have raced but MPCC (Movement for Credible Cycling) regulations impose a break of eight days for any rider whose cortisol level drops below a set level. A month later, Belkin Pro Cycling issued a press release in which doctors stated that the problem was caused by asthma medication.
“A lot of research was needed,” Bos explained. “I’ve been busy with check-ups and we eventually found what it was. The doctors have also indicated a new anti-asthma product for me. I’ve been happy that I could close the chapter but a big question mark remains in many people’s mind. Everyone reads the news but not everyone reads press releases and not everyone believes what is written, so my head was not good.”
The Tour of Hainan is proving to be an excellent remedy to Bos’ negative feelings as he is a happy member of a winning Belkin team. Prior to imposing himself in Haikou, he was delighted with Moreno Hofland’s first pro victory the day before. This race was always on his schedule as his last one for 2013. “But on my initial plan, I was going to do the Tour of Beijing as well,” Bos explained. “But I was not ready for that. I needed more time to find myself again. I had to take it easy, skip Beijing, and ride the Eurometropole Tour before coming here.”
“I’m trying to finish the season with a much better feeling than what I went through in September,” added Bos who already has equalled his personal record of seven victories that he set in 2012 after switching from track cycling after the Beijing Olympics.
“Coming back to China, I was still afraid of the smoke,” he said. “I got pneumonia when I went to Japan last year for holiday. But I’m fine here in Hainan. My goal was to win a stage to rebuild my morale for next year.”
With seven stages remaining in the Tour of Hainan, a reinvigorated Bos might have more to enjoy from cycling in the new chapter he opened when most of his colleagues started their off-season.