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De Maar departs Dauphiné

Rabobank's Marc de Maar, who finished near the bottom of the list in the Dauphiné Libéré's prologue, had to drop out of the first stage. The Dutch rider had been suffering from stomach and intestinal problems, and was actually feeling better Monday, but the effects of the sickness were too much for him.

"He could not keep his food down on Sunday. Things were better on Monday morning, but without sufficient 'fuel,' you cannot finish such a long stage," noted team manager Erik Breukink via the team's website,

De Maar fell behind on the first climb of the day, caught up with the group, fell behind again on another climb and then crashed during the descent. "That was it for him, and he decided to abandon. It is a shame for him because he was gradually getting back into shape. But luckily, he was already feeling better, so I do not think he will be bothered by this for too long," Breukink said.

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