Boonen cancels participation in Tour of California due to ongoing injury
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Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Boonen cancels participation in Tour of California due to ongoing injury

by VeloNation Press at 6:45 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour of California, Injury
Tour of Belgium provisional date for his return to competition

Tom BoonenForced to withdraw from his defence of the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix due to a crash in the former, Tom Boonen has also had to take the difficult decision to pass over what would have been his comeback race, the Tour of California.

The Belgian rider had intended to compete in the race again this year, having clocked up a stage victory there in the past, but ongoing issues arising from his crash have meant that he has had to admit he is not yet ready.

His Omega Pharma-Quick Step manager Patrick Lefevere explained the situation, saying that the race comes too soon for one of his top riders.

“We find that he has not recovered enough,” he told Sporza. “He is still suffering from the knee on which he had surgery and also his thigh and his back hurt. These should be dealt with first, the rest will follow.”

Lefevere confirms that Boonen is back in training, but at a reduced level. This reflects the fact that his body is not yet ready for intensive work, and also means that he is nowhere near optimum condition. Lefevere said that he doesn’t want him to enter the race just to make up numbers.

“The Tour of California this year is also very tough and it is not intended that a rider like Boonen rides just as an extra.”

He adds that he will meet Boonen on Wednesday to discuss his programme, but if all goes well he will be back in the Tour of Belgium. That runs from May 22nd to 26th, and gives him a month of competition prior to the Tour de France.

Boonen originally said he was unlikely to do the Tour but the fact that he has missed the Classics may prompt him to take part. In addition to that, his team-mate Mark Cavendish has said that he would like Boonen to be there in support of his stage winning aspirations.


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