Fifty kilometres from the finish of stage two of the 2011 Vuelta a Espana, Matt Goss (HTC-Highroad) finally decided enough was enough and opted to quit the race, suffering from a severely upset stomach.
“He’s just empty,” HTC-Highroad director Valerio Piva told Cycling Weekly. “He already had problems yesterday in the team time trial and today it just wasn’t possible.”
“It was a real pity,” Piva said, “he was feeling very ambitious for this race, but it just wasn’t possible.”
Goss has been suffering for the last two days with diarrhoea, and although he was able to hang on until the pace really went up in the last couple of hours, as soon as the bunch started accelerating, the Australian had to quit.
Piva said that nobody else in the team was affected with the same problem.
Last year Goss played a key role for Mark Cavendish in the Vuelta leadouts, when the Briton won three stages, and the Australian is hoping to ride a strong World Championships this September.
“It’s not good news for Denmark,” Piva said. “The Vuelta is ideal preparation for the World’s, and it could be tougher for Matt to find the same kind of form in other races.”
“I’m sure, though, he’ll do everything he can to turn his bad luck around and fight hard right through to the end of the season.”
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Vuelta a Espana 2011
: Stage reports
Vuelta a Espana 2011: Photo galleries
By Graham Watson
Stage one photo gallery
Vuelta a Espana 2011: TV guide