Promising young Irish climber Dan Martin failed to start stage three of Paris-Nice today. The Garmin pro. finished well down on Monday?s stage after falling sick.

?I?m not sure what it is, maybe some kind of viral infection but every muscle hurts in my body,? Martin told Cycling Weekly late on Tuesday morning. ?I got up this morning and felt like death.?

?I wanted to race, I was ready to give it a try, but the team said it was better I pull out and try and get better. It?s a long season and I don?t want to wreck it.?

?On top of that, the weather here?s turned awful. Six degrees and I think there?ll be cross-winds throughout the day for the boys.?

Martin says he was surprised by his solid result on Sunday?s time trial, where he finished less than a minute down on winner Alberto Contador.

?I was feeling rough, so I didn?t think I?d do so well, just took myself round at a steady pace.?

“It’s been like that recently, one day good, the next day not so good.”

?Then yesterday [Monday] fortunately it was fairly calm until about 50 kilometres to go, then I hit a good patch at one point, was in the top 20 when there was one echelon. But then the lights went out.? He finished third last on the stage.

?I sat up, took it easy on the last part, but this morning I woke up feeling terrible again. There wasn?t any point in continuing.?

He says he?ll have tests done to see what exactly is wrong, but has no idea yet when he?ll be doing them.

?First I?ve got to get out of here and back home, and that won?t be easy – right now I?m stuck in the middle of France.?

Stage three of Paris-Nice runs from Orval to Vichy and is 178 kilometres long. It should finish around 4 pm local time. A bunch sprint is expected – unless the rough weather splits the peloton apart.


PARIS-NICE 2009

Stage reports

Stage two: Haussler blasts to stage two win

Stage one (prologue): Contador wins, Wiggins second

Latest news/features

Prologue analysis: Contador the unstoppable?

The Big Preview: Paris-Nice 2009

Fleeman to ride Paris-Nice

Why Paris-Nice 2008 was simply a great race

Photo galleries

Stage two photo gallery, by Graham Watson

Stage one TT photo gallery, by Graham Watson

Paris-Nice 2008 photo gallery

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