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"Horner suffers from a recurrence of a left Achilles tendon tendonittis. In joint agreement, we have decided to withdraw him from the race as we don't want to worsen the situation," Lampre doctor Beltemacchi says in a team pre...

Photo: Sirotti








17.03.2014 @ 10:38 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Chris Horner won't take the start of today's flat stage of Tirreno-Adriatico. A recurrence of tendonitis in his Achilles tendon has forced the American to pull the plug in a race where he was sitting in 11th overall.


For the second year in a row, Chris Horner has been hampered by injury in the month of March. After yesterday's long recovery period forced him out of racing from March to August, the American has had to withdraw from Tirreno-Adriatico due to tendonitis.


"Horner suffers from a recurrence of a left Achilles tendon tendonittis. In joint agreement, we have decided to withdraw him from the race as we don't want to worsen the situation," Lampre doctor Beltemacchi said in a team press release.

The Italian race had been Horner's first objective of the season and he had performed well in the first two mountain stages to recover time after a disappointing team time trial. Prior to today's penultimate stage, he was sitting in 11th overall.


In yesterday's brutal stage, Horner had failed to match the pace of Alberto Contadow when the Spaniard attacked on the Passo Larciano and found himself in a second chase group with teammate Diego Ulissi at the top. On the descent, the latter worked hard to bring back Horner to the first chase group and after tackling the steep Muro di Guardiagrele, the dup rolled across the line in 16th and 17th respectively.


"Horner's tenacity and class combined with Ulissi's generosity are the positive points of our day," sports director Orlando Maini said yesterday. "Passo Lanciano was a very important moment in which Diego had to grit his teeth to avoid losing too much ground while Horner set a smooth rhythm that led him to crest the summit with a bit more energy.


In the following section, Ulissi worked fantastically to close the gap. There were riders ahead that could have passed Horner in the overall standings but we managed to reduce the gap and remain in contention for the top 10 positions. The time trial will be the ultimate test."


With Horner out of the race, Lampre-Merida's best rider is now Diego Ulissi who moves into 13th due to his teammate's withdrawal.


You can read our preview of stage 6 here.



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