Carlee Taylor to retire after 2018 Santos Women's Tour

Carlee Taylor has announced she will end her cycling career on home soil in Adelaide at the 2018 Santos Women's Tour (11-14 January). The 28-year-old was a triathlete before commencing her cycling career as the 2008 Amy Gillett Scholarship recipient.

During her career, Taylor rode with the Australian national team, Team TIBCO, Vienne Futuroscope, Lotto Belisol Ladies, Orica-AIS, Team Liv-Plantur, and Alé Cipollini for 2017. In 2010, Taylor won a stage of the Tour Féminin en Limousin and was third overall at the 2012 La Route de France.

Taylor first made the announcement of her retirement via the Peloton Brief, expanding on her decision in a statement on her social media channels.

"Yes, the rumors are true. I will be retiring from professional female cycling," Taylor wrote. "This definitely hasn't been an easy decision for me, as cycling has been my life for pretty much my whole life. However, since my crash earlier this year I have been struggling a lot mentally. I never really got my confidence back, and was quite noticeably scared in the peloton. And when you know where you used to be, still train hard, and go to races that suit you only to constantly have your head that lets you down, it makes a sport that is already hard, even harder."

Eighth at the Australian national championships in January, Taylor's first European race of the 2017 season was Strade Bianche. Taylor then rode all three of the Ardennes classics with her last race of the season the Giro della Toscana Int. Femminile in September. In October, Taylor rode the Taiwan KOM challenge and will spend the Australian summer preparing for her farewell race.

The Santos Women's Tour, upgraded to 2.1 status from 2018, provides Taylor with the opportunity to leave the sport on her own terms as she added.

"It's going to be sad to leave the spirt, but I don't plan to completely leave it. I can't confirm just yet, but like I said on the Peloton Brief I want the Tour Down Under to be my 'goodbye' race, after that I will still be involved in the sport, but will be combining my love for cycling with working life. I do want to work in cycling, so you haven't see the last of me yet!".

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