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Gallery: Freire, Moncoutie and Barry also retiring in 2012

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Spain's Oscar Freire was the surprise winner of the 1999 road world championship.

Spain's Oscar Freire was the surprise winner of the 1999 road world championship.
(Image credit: AFP)
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Oscar Freire (Rabobank) nips in to pip Erik Zabel at the death. Milan-San Remo, 2004.

Oscar Freire (Rabobank) nips in to pip Erik Zabel at the death. Milan-San Remo, 2004.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Oscar Freire was a mainstay at Rabobank, winning the green jersey at the 2008 Tour de France.

Oscar Freire was a mainstay at Rabobank, winning the green jersey at the 2008 Tour de France.
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Oscar Freire Gomez (Katusha)

Oscar Freire Gomez (Katusha)
(Image credit: Isabelle Duchesne)
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World champion Oscar Freire (Vitalicio Seguros) shows off the rainbow jersey during the 1999 Tour of Lombardy.

World champion Oscar Freire (Vitalicio Seguros) shows off the rainbow jersey during the 1999 Tour of Lombardy.
(Image credit: AFP)
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World Cup leader Andre Tchmil, left, shakes hands with newly crowned world champion Oscar Freire (Vitalicio Seguros) on the start line of the 1999 Tour of Lombardy.

World Cup leader Andre Tchmil, left, shakes hands with newly crowned world champion Oscar Freire (Vitalicio Seguros) on the start line of the 1999 Tour of Lombardy.
(Image credit: AFP)
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1999 Elite men's road Worlds podium (L-R): Markus Zberg (Switzerland), 2nd; Oscar Freire (Spain), 1st; Jean-Cyril Robin (France), 3rd

1999 Elite men's road Worlds podium (L-R): Markus Zberg (Switzerland), 2nd; Oscar Freire (Spain), 1st; Jean-Cyril Robin (France), 3rd
(Image credit: AFP)
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Bettini and Rebellin push the break as Freire follows the wheel in a crack break in the 2003 Milan-San Remo

Bettini and Rebellin push the break as Freire follows the wheel in a crack break in the 2003 Milan-San Remo
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Oscar Freire sprints to his third world title in 2004. The win saw him equal the number of world titles by a single rider.

Oscar Freire sprints to his third world title in 2004. The win saw him equal the number of world titles by a single rider.
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Oscar Freire (Spain) was emotional before the race

Oscar Freire (Spain) was emotional before the race
(Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)
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Oscar Freire (Katusha) put in another strong performance

Oscar Freire (Katusha) put in another strong performance
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Oscar Freire (Mapei) won his second world title in 2001 and concluded the season at the Giro di Lombardia in the rainbow jersey.

Oscar Freire (Mapei) won his second world title in 2001 and concluded the season at the Giro di Lombardia in the rainbow jersey.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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A familiar face in the last decade: Freire winning, this time at the Tour of Romandie in 2009

A familiar face in the last decade: Freire winning, this time at the Tour of Romandie in 2009
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Oscar Freire (Spain) on Jan Ullrich's wheel during the 1999 world championship road race in Verona, Italy.

Oscar Freire (Spain) on Jan Ullrich's wheel during the 1999 world championship road race in Verona, Italy.
(Image credit: AFP)
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Stage winner Oscar Freire (Katusha) celebrates

Stage winner Oscar Freire (Katusha) celebrates
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Riders make their way around Oscar Freire (Rabobank), who crashed on the descent of Le Manie.

Riders make their way around Oscar Freire (Rabobank), who crashed on the descent of Le Manie.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Stage 13 runner-up David Moncoutie (Cofidis)

Stage 13 runner-up David Moncoutie (Cofidis)
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Team Sky's Michael Barry signed in for one of his final races

Team Sky's Michael Barry signed in for one of his final races
(Image credit: Peter Kraiker/studiofstop.com)
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Michael Barry (Team Sky)

Michael Barry (Team Sky)
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Canada's Michael Barry (Sky) in action during the 2012 Tour de Suisse.

Canada's Michael Barry (Sky) in action during the 2012 Tour de Suisse.
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Canadian Michael Barry (Team Sky)

Canadian Michael Barry (Team Sky)
(Image credit: IG Markets / Team Sky)
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Bradley Wiggins follows Michael Barry on stage ten

Bradley Wiggins follows Michael Barry on stage ten
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Bob Stapleton and Michael Barry posing together

Bob Stapleton and Michael Barry posing together
(Image credit: Shane Stokes/Cyclingnews.com)
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Kim Kirchen and Michael Barry (High Road) have a refreshing drink after the stage.

Kim Kirchen and Michael Barry (High Road) have a refreshing drink after the stage.
(Image credit: Cyclinginside.com)
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Joost Posthuma (RadioShack Nissan)

Joost Posthuma (RadioShack Nissan)
(Image credit: Sonja Csury)
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Joost Posthuma (Rabobank)

Joost Posthuma (Rabobank)
(Image credit: www.ispaphoto.com)
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Joost Posthuma (Rabobank) working hard for his podium place.

Joost Posthuma (Rabobank) working hard for his podium place.
(Image credit: Bert Geerts)
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Joost Posthuma

Joost Posthuma
(Image credit: Elmar Krings)
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Joost Posthuma (Rabobank) won

Joost Posthuma (Rabobank) won
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Dutch rider Joost Posthuma (Rabobank) went on to finish outside of the top 100.

Dutch rider Joost Posthuma (Rabobank) went on to finish outside of the top 100.
(Image credit: DCP/Bert Geerts)
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Rubens Bertogliati (Team Type 1) has a wealth of experience.

Rubens Bertogliati (Team Type 1) has a wealth of experience.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Rubens Bertogliati wins stage 1 at the 2002 Tour de France and moves into the overall lead

Rubens Bertogliati wins stage 1 at the 2002 Tour de France and moves into the overall lead
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Team Type 1's Rubens Bertogliati and Daniele Callegarin.

Team Type 1's Rubens Bertogliati and Daniele Callegarin.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Jesse Anthony (Kelly Benefit Strategies-OptumHealth) has bridged across to two members of the early break, Rubens Bertogliati (Team Type 1-Sanofi) and Bradley White (UnitedHealthcare).

Jesse Anthony (Kelly Benefit Strategies-OptumHealth) has bridged across to two members of the early break, Rubens Bertogliati (Team Type 1-Sanofi) and Bradley White (UnitedHealthcare).
(Image credit: Jonathan Devich)
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Rubens Bertogliati (Androni-Giocattoli)

Rubens Bertogliati (Androni-Giocattoli)
(Image credit: Jean-François Quénet)
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Rubens Bertogliati (Saunier Duval-Scott) checks in with the team after the finish.

Rubens Bertogliati (Saunier Duval-Scott) checks in with the team after the finish.
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Rubens Bertogliati (Switzerland) awaits his start.

Rubens Bertogliati (Switzerland) awaits his start.
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Rubens Bertogliati (Androni Giocattoli) holds off the charging peloton for second place in the Giro d'Italia stage 6.

Rubens Bertogliati (Androni Giocattoli) holds off the charging peloton for second place in the Giro d'Italia stage 6.
(Image credit: Sirotti)
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Dmitriy Fofonov (Astana)

Dmitriy Fofonov (Astana)
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)
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Remi Di Gregorio and Dmitri Fofonov (Astana)

Remi Di Gregorio and Dmitri Fofonov (Astana)
(Image credit: Isabelle Duchesne)
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Dmitriy Fofonov (Crédit Agricole) was the fastest of the day's three-man escape at the finish in Grenoble.

Dmitriy Fofonov (Crédit Agricole) was the fastest of the day's three-man escape at the finish in Grenoble.
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Dmitri Fofonov (Astana)

Dmitri Fofonov (Astana)
(Image credit: Jean-François Quénet)
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Dmitriy Fofonov (Kazakhstan) attacks on the KOM for the day.

Dmitriy Fofonov (Kazakhstan) attacks on the KOM for the day.
(Image credit: Mark Gunter/Cyclingnews)
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Dmitriy Fofonov will not have much to laugh in the near future

Dmitriy Fofonov will not have much to laugh in the near future
(Image credit: AFP)
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Jose Luis Arrieta (AG2R) beats Fofonov and Loosli to win stage 19

Jose Luis Arrieta (AG2R) beats Fofonov and Loosli to win stage 19
(Image credit: AFP Photo)
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Dmitriy Fofonov (Crédit Agricole) counting down the corners. The Kazakh rider would eventually finish 17th on the stage.

Dmitriy Fofonov (Crédit Agricole) counting down the corners. The Kazakh rider would eventually finish 17th on the stage.
(Image credit: Stephen McMahon/st.mcmahon@gmail.com)

Even riders who win three World championship titles or multiple mountain titles at the Vuelta a Espana must retire at some point. Oscar Freire and David Moncoutie are two of the leading riders in the second part of Cyclingnews' photographic look back at the riders who have called it a day in 2012.

Oscar Freire can proudly claim the records for winning both the World road championship and Milan-San Remo three times. The Spaniard spent only two years on a Spanish team -he started out with Vitalicio Seguros, passing much of his career with Rabobank (2003-2011). His greatest successes were in one-day races, not only the above-mentioned Worlds and Milan-San Remo, but also Gent-Wevelgem, the Vattenfall Cyclassics, Paris-Tours and Brabantse Pijl (three times). He also did well in the Tour de France, with four stage wins and one points jersey green jersey, and the Vuelta a Espana with seven stages. He also won Tirreno-Adriatico in 2005.

Canada's Michael Barry announced his retirement shortly before the disclosures of his testimony in the Lance Armstrong case and his resulting six month suspension. Barry had ridden professionally since 1999, with Saturn, USPS, T-Mobile and Team Sky. He brought in a minimal number of wins, mostly serving as a high-class domestique. He has also written three books about his experiences in the peloton.

David Moncoutie is a Frenchman who was King of the Spanish mountains. He spent all 17 years of his career with Cofidis, an oddity in this day and age. Moncoutie won two stages at the Tour de France but most of his most recent glory is associated with the Vuelta a Espana. Not only did he win four stages in the race over the years, he took the mountains classification for four consecutive years, from 2008 to 2011.

Rubens Bertogliati had a solid 12-year career as a pro but can boast of leading the Tour de France. While riding for Lampre in 2002, the Swiss rider won the first stage of the Tour and held on the leader's yellow jersey for two days. That was the highlight of his career, which he ended with Team Type 1. In later years he also took two national time trial titles.

Like so many first-generation Kazakh riders, Dimitriy Fofonov came up through the French ranks, spending a number of years with Cofidis and Credit Agricole. He tested positive for heptaminol at the 2008 Tour de France and was banned for two years. Fofonov closed out his career with three years at Astana.

Joost Posthuma was forced into retirement when he was unable to find a new contract for 2013. After nine years in the Rabobank ranks, he hard-working domestique signed with Leopard-Trek in 2011 and was with RadioShack this year. He saw himself as a victim of the UCI's points system, saying, “there are many teams that need ProTour points and, to be honest, I have none. Teams need points in order to remain in the top tier.”

View part 1 of Cyclingnews' photographic look back on riders who retired in 2012