Scott Davies retires aged 26

BEZIERS FRANCE AUGUST 01 Arrival Scott Davies of The United Kingdom and Team Bahrain McLaren during the 44th La Route dOccitanie La Depeche du Midi 2020 Stage 1 a 187km stage from Saint Affrique to Cazouls ls Bziers RouteOccitanie RDO2020 on August 01 2020 in Beziers France Photo by Justin SetterfieldGetty Images
Scott Davies announced he will retire (Image credit: Getty Images)

Scott Davies has announced that he is retiring from professional cycling at just 26 years of age.

The Welsh rider was once seen as one of the biggest British talents but has struggled with injuries since turning pro in 2018.

His 2021 season was derailed by a hip injury that required surgery and a long rehabilitation process, meaning he only made two appearances for his Bahrain Victorious team, failing to finish either race.

Davies was not offered a contract extension and has faced a decision over his future, announcing on Thursday that he will step away from the sport.

"After a challenging 18 months with injury, surgery, and rehab, I've had to come to the difficult decision to retire early from professional cycling at the end of the year. A decision I'd hoped wouldn't come so soon, but one that comes at the end of a journey that I'll be forever grateful for," Davies said.

"My 11-year-old self would have never believed that my passion for cycling would one day become my profession. I am incredibly lucky to have been able to race all over the world and to have met some fantastic people along the way. I have gained experiences and lessons that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.

"Life as a professional cyclist has taught me the value of discipline, resilience, commitment, attention to detail and trusting in yourself."

Davies formerly rode for Team Wiggins as he rose through the ranks, winning the British U23 time trial title four years running between 2014 and 2017, getting the better of contemporaries like Tao Geoghegan Hart and Owain Doull.

Fast against the clock but also strong uphill, he was seen as an all-rounder who could develop into a general classification rider, underlined by his fourth place at the U23 Giro in 2017.

He turned professional in 2018 with Dimension Data but struggled to find his feet at WorldTour level, partly due to the South African team's struggles at the time, with a long injury list leaving riders like Davies to plug gaps.

He made his Grand Tour debut at the Giro d'Italia in 2019 before moving on and signing for Bahrain Victorious, when former Team Sky coach Rod Ellingworth began his brief stint as manager.

He rode the Vuelta a España during a pandemic-disrupted 2020 but then suffered a hip injury, which disrupted his winter and prevented him from starting his 2021 season as planned. He underwent surgery in April, and only came back in August at the Bretagne Classic when his team were short of riders. In reality, he was still not rehabilitated and another DNF at the British nationals marked the end of his season and, ultimately, his career.

"Thank you to everyone who believed in me, supported me, and gave me the opportunities to succeed. To all of my former teammates and colleagues, it's been a pleasure to work with you all," Davies said.

"I'm sincerely grateful to all the teams I've been a part of, to Welsh Cycling & Sport Wales who have supported me throughout my career, and in particular to all of those who have been a part of my rehab process this year. I owe a special thank you to my friends and family who have supported me through the highs and lows of professional sport. Last but not least, to my parents and longest supporters, Aled and Tina.

"It's now time for me to reflect before deciding on what my next challenges and opportunities will be."

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