British champion David Millar has pulled out of Paris-Nice, suffering from illness.
The Slipstream rider had targeted the race, and had been optimistic of getting onto the podium. But his overall hopes had taken a fatal blow as soon as the race hit the hills on stage three. On the Col de la Croix de Chaubouret, he was unable to follow the pace of the leaders, and in yesterday?s climb of Mont Ventoux, he was one of the first to be dropped.
Millar developed a fever yesterday, and felt worse and worse through the night. He took the decision this morning, along with manager Jonathan Vaughters, to pull out of the race.
?Dave had a little fever last night, and eight times out of 10 that doesn?t break for the best,? said Vaughters.
?It?s better he goes home and rests, so he can recover for Critérium International. Nothing changes for the rest of this race ? we?ll go for a stage win, we?ve just got one less guy, that?s all.?
Millar was disappointed to have to pull out of the race.
"It's just one of those things. I think I've overdone it a bit, and the bad weather earlier in the week didn't help. I think if it hadn't been for that I might have got away with it," he said.
Millar plans to race Milan-San Remo, and then Critérium International, before taking a short break from competition in April.
PARIS-NICE 2008: STAGE REPORTS
Stage four: Evans above
Stage three: Flying Finn takes the win
Stage two: Steegmans back on top
Stage one: Steegmans rides the storm
Prologue: Hushovd wins
Millar out of Paris-Nice
Stage four analysis
Stage three analysis
Stage one analysis
Millar goes down but isn't out
Prologue analysis: winners and losers
Big names line up for Paris-Nice and defy UCI
Teams vote to ride Paris-Nice
Paris-Nice preview: does the route suit David Millar?
Days two and three
Thank you for reading 10 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Edward Pickering is a writer and journalist, editor of Pro Cycling and previous deputy editor of Cycle Sport. As well as contributing to Cycling Weekly, he has also written for the likes of the New York Times. His book, The Race Against Time, saw him shortlisted for Best New Writer at the British Sports Book Awards. A self-confessed 'fair weather cyclist', Pickering also enjoys running.
Cycling idyll or danger zone? Spike in deaths on rural French roads
Cycling deaths shoot up on the roads that have long been renowned for safe and respectful driving
By James Shrubsall • Published
Who's the fastest man? New season starts with an unclear sprinting hierarchy
Sam Bennett, Biniam Girmay, Dylan Groenewgen, Fabio Jakobsen and Arnaud De Lie have all won, and Mark Cavendish hasn't even kicked off his year yet
By Adam Becket • Published