Giovanni Visconti calls a sudden stop to career at 39

Giro dItalia 2020 103rd Edition 15th stage Base Area Rivolto Frecce Tricolori Piancavallo 185km 18102020 Giovanni Visconti ITA Vini Zabu KTM photo Luca BettiniBettiniPhoto2020
(Image credit: Bettini Photo)

Giovanni Visconti (Bardiani CSF Faizainè) announced an abrupt end to his career on Wednesday, writing on Twitter that he has been suffering on and off the bike for months.

The Italian started Tirreno-Adriatico this week but did not finish Tuesday's stage 2, which turned out to be his final competitive outing. 

The 39-year-old racked up 37 wins during his 18-year professional career, including two stages of the Giro d'Italia in 2013 and three Italian national titles. 

His most recent success came in the 2019 Giro della Toscana, where he beat Egan Bernal from a successful breakaway. He also led the mountains classification at the 2020 Giro d'Italia and finished second to Jonathan Caicedo on the Mount Etna stage but was hit by a team car the next day.

A one-day race specialist and keen climber, Visconti raced with top teams such as Milram, QuickStep, and Bahrain-Merida, but his longest WorldTour stint came with the Movistar Team from 2012 to 2016.

In 2012, Visconti was banned for three months and fined €10,000 for working with banned trainer Michele Ferrari. He admitted to working with the Lance Armstrong doping conspirator but insisted he had only taken training advice.

"Mine was not a simple career but it is not the time for the various 'ifs' and 'buts' and above all this is not the purpose of this letter... Do you know what I've been saying for years? I say that I don't want to be that racer who will drag his bike after his career," Visconti wrote.

"I certainly didn't become a champion but I think I was a good rider. I have won what my body and my head have allowed me to win and if I look back I can only have some regrets - no remorse."

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