Team Sky has pulled out of the Vuelta a Espana following the death of their team soigneur Txema Gonzalez on Friday.
The team made the announcement early Saturday morning in a press release on its website. Although they will not be racing, Sky's riders will attend the minute's silence in Gonzalez's honour at the start of the Saturday's stage in Villena.
Gonzalez died in hospital on Friday after a bacterial infection developed into a sepsis blood infection.
Sky principal Dave Brailsford said in a press release "Txema's death is devastating to everyone in Team Sky."
"We've lost a good friend, a much respected and valued colleague."
"We have considered all the elements very carefully and this is the only decision we could take."
Brailsford said the team will attend Gonzalez' funeral next week.
"The organisers of the Vuelta and the UCI have both been informed of our decision and we are deeply grateful for their cooperation and understanding."
The same press release also pointed out that several other riders and team members had become ill during the race because of a viral infection, not connected with Gonzalez' illness.
"The medical conditions are different but we need to take care of our team." Three of the riders had already pulled out of the race, Ben Swift and John-Lee Augustyn on stage three and Spain's Juan Antonio Flecha on stage seven.
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
Founded in 1891, Cycling Weekly and its team of expert journalists brings cyclists in-depth reviews, extensive coverage of both professional and domestic racing, as well as fitness advice and 'brew a cuppa and put your feet up' features. Cycling Weekly serves its audience across a range of platforms, from good old-fashioned print to online journalism, and video.
CW Live: Specialized axes women's kit brand Machines for Freedom; Dubai plots 93km climate controlled bike path
We scour the internet for all the best bits from the world of cycling
By Vern Pitt • Published
Racing on a budget vs no expense spared - here's the difference money made to my cycling performance
Just how much faster could an average rider go if they had access to all the best aerodynamic kit and knowledge? Cycling Weekly Editor, Simon Richardson went to find out...
By Simon Richardson • Published