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Nine-time track world champion Grégory Baugé announces retirement

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during Day Five of the UCI Track Cycling World Championships at the National Velodrome on February 22, 2015 in Paris, France.

Baugé celebrating his individual sprint win at the Track Worlds in Paris 2015 (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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Frances Gregory Bauge R Mickael DAlmeida C and Kevin Sireau L compete during the Mens Team Sprint final race at the UCI World Cup track cycling an official test event for the London 2012 Olympic Games at the Velodrome in the Olympic Park in London on February 17 2012 AFP PHOTO ADRIAN DENNIS Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNISAFP via Getty Images

Baugé competing with Kévin Sireau and Michaël D'Almeida in 2012 (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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<<enter caption here>> on March 27, 2010 in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Baugé battles with Chris Hoy at the 2010 Worlds (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)
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Bordeaux FRANCE French riders from L Gregory Bauge Mickael Bourgain and Arnaud Tournant celebrate their gold medal on the podium after they won the mens team sprint final during the UCI Track Cycling World Championships in Bordeaux 13 April 2006 AFP PHOTO Franck FIFE Photo credit should read FRANCK FIFEAFP via Getty Images

Baugé celebrates his first world title with teammates Mickaël Bourgain and Arnaud Tournant (Image credit: Getty Images Sport)

French track rider Grégory Baugé has called time on his racing career at the age of 35. A nine-time world champion and four-time Olympic medallist, Baugé was set to end his career at the Tokyo Olympics but announced his retirement on Sunday.

Baugé announced his decision on the Stade 2 programme on France TV Sport, saying that he no longer felt able to extract 100 per cent of his abilities ahead of the rescheduled Olympics.

"I have always been at 100 per cent and I noticed I was no longer in this pattern," he said. "Overnight, I felt that I was restricted to 90 per cent. That isn't enough to seek a performance at the Olympics."

Baugé, who hails from Maisons-Laffitte north-west of Paris, is among the most successful French track cyclists of his generation, a three-time medallist in the team sprint at the Olympics. He won silver at Beijing 2008 and London 2012, plus bronze at Rio 2016. He also won a silver in the individual sprint in 2012.

In addition to his Olympic palmarès, Baugé was team sprint world champion with France on five occasions – in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2015 – and took the rainbow jersey in the individual competition in 2009, 2010, 2012 and 2015. He also won five European titles during his career and won the Vélo d'or Français in 2009.

"I miss the Olympic title," he said. "But my biggest regret is to have caused my teammates to lose a world title."

In 2011, Baugé had won the individual sprint and team sprint world titles – the latter alongside long-time teammates Kévin Sireau and Michaël D'Almeida – but lost both after violating anti-doping whereabouts rules, having missed a test and made two filing failures during the year.

UCI President David Lappartient was among those to pay tribute to Baugé on Sunday, posting to Twitter. 

"With [Baugé] announcing his retirement this evening, I'd like to thank him for his dedication and passion for track cycling and wish him all the best for the future."

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