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Time trial world champion Grabsch out of Tour of Ireland

Bert Grabsch powers to victory in the 42.4-kilometre time trial.

Bert Grabsch powers to victory in the 42.4-kilometre time trial. (Image credit: Fotoreporter Sirotti)

Time trial world champion Bert Grabsch of Columbia-HTC had to cancel his appearance in the Tour of Ireland due to bronchitis. It would have been his debut in the race, which runs August 21 to 23.

"Since I have a light case of bronchitis, it's better to stay at home," he said on his website. "Especially since the weather forecast for Ireland is not very good, with 16° Celsius and rain."

Germany's Grabsch, 33, still plans to be at the start of the Vuelta à España on August 29. That is "an important preparation for the upcoming World Championship, which I don't want to take any risks of missing."

Grabsch said that his condition is improving thanks to antibiotics and he hopes to start training again Thursday.

He has two victories so far this season, the time trial in the Dauphiné Libéré and the German time trial championships.

He won the time trial world championships last year in Varese, Italy.

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