Tyler Farrar will leave the Giro d’Italia after stage 4, a stage neutralized by a common agreement between the riders and the organisation of the race. He was a close friend and neighbour of deceased rider Wouter Weylandt in Ghent.
“Wouter was like a brother for Tyler,” Garmin-Cervelo's directeur sportif Lionel Marie told Cyclingnews in Genova. “We’re also sending a masseur, Joachim Schoonaker, to assist and support him in Belgium as his wife is in the States at the moment.”
Race leader David Millar was prompt to lead the bunch in the process of paying tribute to Weylandt. “Today is not a day for fighting for position,” he said. “We’ll ride to the finish. We’ll respect Wouter’s memory and ride well. We’ll learn from this as well and work more on safety. This can happen every day.”
Solemnity reigned at the sign in area where commentator Stefano Bertolotti explained to the people that it was “just a formality”. Millar spoke with race favourite Alberto Contador like brothers in arms.
“This is a very difficult day,” Contador told Cyclingnews. “It’s impossible to explain but we are paying a tribute to Wouter today. We’ll remember him as a champion who won stages at the Giro and the Vuelta.”