Geraint Thomas has withdrawn from the Giro after further scans have revealed a fracture to his pelvis.
Geraint Thomas said: “It’s so frustrating. I’d put so much work in to this race. I did everything I could and feel like I was in just as good, if not better shape, than when I won the Tour. I was feeling really good. So for it just to end like this is gutting.
“I was really up for starting today. I woke up and wanted to start with the boys and at least help them go for stages over the next few days, but deep down I knew something wasn’t right, so we went to get these extra scans. It does make the decision easier when there’s a fracture in some ways, because obviously I don’t want to do anymore damage.”
There will be no repeat of the heroics G showed in the 2013 Tour de France when he rode he completed the Tour after fracturing his pelvis on the opening stage.
After missing out on the Tour with INEOS favouring one sole leader, Egan Bernal who dropped out after Stage 15, G switched his focus to the Giro. With a strong finish at the Tour Adriatico, finishing second behind fellow Brit, Simon Yates, who is also at the Giro, Thomas also finished fourth at the UCI World Championships time trial, signalling his form.
Looking in good shape, Thomas finished fourth in the opening time trial, 23 seconds down on fellow INEOS rider, Filippo Ganna.
Thomas Giro took a turn for the worse on Stage 3, the first mountain stage, in the neutralised zone where he rode over a rouge bidon and went down hard on his left hand side. As soon as the stage hit the foot of the climb, Thomas was clearly in trouble, dropping out the back of the peloton and finishing 12 minutes down on the stage. It was clear from this moment something was wrong and to even climb Mount Etna is a challenge but to do it with a fractured pelvis shows the determination of Thomas to want to finish the Giro.
INEOS Grenadiers Doctor Phil Riley said: “Geraint had an MRI and a CT scan this morning which revealed a small undisplaced fracture in the lower part of the pelvis which wasn’t picked up on the X-rays yesterday. As a precaution he will be withdrawn from the race as it’s an injury that could easily be aggravated.”
INEOS will now pass leadership to the rider who is highest in the standing, British rider Tao Geoghegan Hart who is three minutes down on the Maglia Rosa, the famous pink leaders jersey.