No Arctic Tour of Norway for Kristoff due to bout of bacterial pneumonia
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Tuesday, August 6, 2013

No Arctic Tour of Norway for Kristoff due to bout of bacterial pneumonia

by Shane Stokes at 12:08 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Injury
Major target for Katusha rider lost because of illness

Alexander KristoffA mainly flat race taking place on home soil in Norway would normally be foremost on the wish list for the Katusha sprinter Alexander Kristoff but his goal of taking on other riders such as Thor Hushovd in the race has had to be scrapped due to illness.

Kristoff has been ill in recent days, suffering from a fever and chest issues; now, following an x-ray carried out today, he has been diagnosed with bacterial pneumonia in the right lung.

As a consequence the 26 year old has been forced to withdraw from the race and is taking antibiotics to try to reduce a body temperature that has reached 39 degrees.

Team director sportif Valerio Piva is disappointed at the news, not least because he saw him as a rider who could do very well there.

“It is such a pity for Alexander and our team, because after Tour de France he was in a great shape and could get some nice results in next races, including the Arctic Race of Norway. He was very motivated,” he said.

Piva said that he and the team hope he recovers quickly and can return to racing soon.

Kristoff already rode strongly on home soil this year, winning three stages in the Glava Tour of Norway. He also picked up victory on stage five of the Tour de Suisse and on stage 3a of the Three Days of De Panne, and netted second overall in the latter.

He showed his versatility by performing well in the big one day races in the spring, netting fourth in the Ronde van Vlaanderen, fifth in Schledeprijs, eighth in Milan-Sanremo and ninth in Paris-Roubaix.

It is not yet clear what the 2012 Olympic bronze medallist’s next race will be, nor who will take over his slot on the team for the race.

Compatriot Thor Hushovd has already said that he is aiming for a stage win plus overall victory in the Arctic Tour of Norway.

He has hit a strong run of form in recent weeks, beating Kristoff to win the national road race championships, then clocking up a stage win in the Tour of Austria plus two stages in last week’s Tour of Poland.


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