Enrico Gasparotto has announced his retirement from professional cycling at the age of 38 after a successful career spanning 16 years for eight teams, winning various races.
Gasparotto is perhaps best known for his two wins and other excellent performances at the opening race of the Ardennes Classics, Amstel Gold Race, but the Italian-born rider, who is now Swiss registered, has managed so much more than that.
"Cycling has been my life for the past 20 years: 16 as a professional and four as an under-23," wrote the 38 year old on an Instagram post on Sunday (November 29).
"[It's been] a journey that has seen me grow and mature, both as an athlete and as a person, and that taught me what determination, hard work, perseverance, sacrifice and being able to get up after a defeat mean.
"It is these absolute values that I will carry with me and that will guide my new path."
Gasparotto turned pro with the Italian squad Liquigas, where he raced for three years before a year at Barloworld and then a year at Lampre.
He then joined Astana, he stayed with the Kazakhstani outfit for five years when he joined Wanty-Groupe Gobert for two years, a year at Bahrain-Merida followed before he joined the team soon to be called Qhubeka-Assos, now NTT Pro Cycling, where he raced for two years until the end of his career in 2020.
"I want to remember all the teams where I have served in these sixteen years, each of them has stimulated my personal growth and for this I want to thank them all for the opportunity.
"It has been an honour to race for your colours and to fight in the most important races of the world cycling scene.
"I have always lived cycling in an all-encompassing way, with great passion and dedication and I think the right time has come to say goodbye and dedicate more time to my family and my crew, led by my wife Anna (fundamental in everything), my parents Toni and Luigina, my sister Lisa and those friends with whom I have shared ideas and opinions in the last days.
"Thank you, guys, for the incredible unconditional support, both in moments of maximum joy and especially in difficulties.
He was national champion of Italy in 2005 and briefly wore the pink jersey at the 2006 Giro d'Italia, thanks to a team time trial where he led the team over the line instead of the planned leader, Danilo De Luca.
Taking ten career wins, not including TTT victories, he was still an incredibly talented rider who achieved many great things.
Gasparotto changed his nationality to Swiss in 2019, as he had lived there for many years, so that he had a better chance at riding the World Championships one last time, which he did in Emilia-Romagna in 2020 where he finished 46th.
"My great goal of these sixteen years and above all of these last years of career has certainly been to seek sporting success, but also to be myself, with my strengths and weaknesses, always trying to leave something of me for every person with whom I have had the pleasure of working.
"The messages received in recent years from my younger colleagues, masseurs, mechanics, sports directors make me understand that I have succeeded in this; this makes me a happy and proud person for the work done so far and makes me look to the future with confidence."
João Rodrigues snatches Volta ao Algarve victory from Ethan Hayter after punishing final climb
João Rodrigues snatched the Volta ao Algarve victory from Ethan Hayter after a punishing final climb
By Chris Marshall-Bell •
Five talking points from stage two of the Giro d'Italia 2021
Gaviria's run-in with a team-mate, confusion at the intermediate sprint, and Merlier's big win - don't miss these moments from the first sprint
By Stephen Puddicombe •
Fabio Aru officially signs for Qhubeka-Assos as he looks to reboot his career
Fabio Aru finally announces that he will be joining Qhubeka-Assos for the 2021 season after several transfer rumours went around
By Tim Bonville-Ginn •
‘I’m still coming to terms with what happened’: Nic Dlamini responds after having his arm broken by park rangers
Nic Dlamini says he’s still “coming to terms with what happened” after he was injured by park rangers during an altercation over Christmas.
By Alex Ballinger •
He may be missing the Tour, but don’t write off Mark Cavendish just yet
He may have missed out on selection for the Tour, but Mark Cavendish has made a career out of bouncing back
By Peter Cossins •
How you can buy Mark Cavendish’s Cervélo S5
Lovers of cycling memorabilia can now pick up a piece of history, in the shape of Mark Cavendish’s Cervélo S5.
By Alex Ballinger •
Mark Cavendish to stay with Dimension Data through 2019, according to reports
Star sprinter Mark Cavendish will race in 2019 with Dimension Data after reaching a last-minute deal for an additional year, according to reports.
By Gregor Brown •
How Scott Davies’ dream to turn pro in the WorldTour nearly didn’t happen
Scott Davies thought his dream to turn pro had been dashed by ill health and ill fortune, but determination and no little talent saw him taken on by Dimension Data. He tells Sophie Smith about his transformational year
By Sophie Smith •
‘I am definitely in it to win it’: Mark Cavendish set for Six Day London return
Mark Cavendish set to take part in the Six Day London event in Lee Valley Velodrome over October 23-28 2018
By Nigel Wynn •
Scott Thwaites fractures spine in training crash
Dimension Data team report that Yorkshireman Scott Thwaites has fractured his spine due to an accident while training
By Nigel Wynn •