“Frankly, the idea of retiring has been in my head since last winter,” Charteau told Ouest France, explaining that his reasons for retiring are both personal and professional.
“I love my sport but being away from home is hard. I have the impression of not seeing my children grow up and the style of racing, generally, is leaving less and less space for riders like me, the baroudeurs. Finally, I’m not able to re-find my level of 2010.”
Charteau was a surprise winner of the king of the mountains title at the 2010 Tour de France, a title he won primarily by picking up points early on in stages after a series of aggressive rides in the second and third weeks of the race.
The Nantes native has been a professional for thirteen years and has spent nine of those riding for Jean-René Bernaudeau’s teams. He turned professional with Bonjour in 2001 and had spells with Crédit Agricole (2006-2007) and Caisse d’Épargne (2008-2009). Charteau returned to the Bernaudeau stable with Bouygues Telecom (now Europcar) in 2010.
As well as taking the polka dot jersey in 2010, Charteau also claimed a stage at the 2005 Volta a Catalunya, overall victory at the Tour de Langkawi in 2007 and a stage win over the Col du Tourmalet at the 2011 Route du Sud. Charteau has not been included in Europcar's line-up for the past two editions of the Tour de France.
“I don’t want to stop by doing a season too many. So now I have two months left to try and get some results,” said Charteau, who will ride the Tour de l’Ain, Tour du Poitou-Charentes and Grand Prix Ouest-France before bringing the curtain down on his career in Team Europcar’s home race, the Tour de Vendée.