David Veilleux has announced that he will retire from professonal cycling following the Grand Prix de Montréal at the weekend. The Team Europcar rider’s surprise decision comes at the end of a fine 2013 season that saw him win a stage of the Critérium du Dauphiné and become the first Quebecois to ride the Tour de France.
Still only 25 years of age, Veilleux explained that he has fulfilled his ambitions as a rider and that he is now retiring in order to complete a diploma in mechanical engineering at the Université Laval in Quebec.
“Today I am announcing that the Grand Prix races in Quebec and Montreal will be my last competitions as a professional cyclist,” Veilleux wrote in a letter published by tvasports.ca. “I’ve taken the decision to end my career with the aim of pursuing my studies full-time and getting my diploma in mechanical engineering at the Université Laval in two years’ time.”
Veilleux joined Team Europcar in 2011 after spending three seasons with the Kelly Benefit Strategies squad in North America. He quickly adapted to life at WorldTour level and progressed to win the Tre Valli Varesine in 2012 and the opening stage of the Dauphiné this year.
The Canadian went on to win the Boucles de la Mayenne and his good June form was rewarded with a place in Team Europcar’s Tour de France team. Veilleux reached Paris in 123rd place overall. However Veilleux has not raced since and will call time on his career in Canada this weekend.
“I’ve participated in many of the monuments of cycling that made me dream in my youth, such as Milan-San Remo, Paris-Roubaix, the Tour of Flanders and the world championships. And to cap it all, I was able to achieve my wildest dream, to take part in and complete the Tour de France,” Veilleux said.
“I’ve reached my sporting objectives and now it’s time for me to pursue my other, personal objectives. I’m looking forward to the next few years, so that I can spend more time with the people close to me and eventually start a family.
“My passion for cycling will always remain. I’m going to spend less time on my bike, but I want to take the time to go and ride with the young cyclists in the region. I’d like to help them on their path and talk to them of my experience.”
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