British rider Abi Van Twisk is taking a step back from her racing career as she takes maternity leave.
The 23-year-old, who has raced for Trek-Segafredo since the team was formed in 2019, has announced she is expecting her first child in February next year and plans to focus on motherhood in the foreseeable future.
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Van Twisk raced early in 2020 but has not returned to the peloton since the season re-started, and says she has no plans to rush back to top-tier cycling.
The London-born rider said: “I am not planning on rushing straight back into professional cycling at the top level.
“I love it and know I will miss it, but for now, I want to focus on motherhood and see what an addition it will be to my life. It’s a beautiful time, and I am incredibly excited for the new chapter and the new opportunities to come.”
After joining Drops Cycling Team in 2016, Van Twisk joined Lizzie Deignan at Trek-Segafredo when the team was set up and then went they joined the new Women’s WorldTour.
Deignan recently took a year away from racing to have her first child and has since returned to her best, winning the GP Plouay and La Course just a few days apart.
Van Twisk said: “I don’t want to put pressure on myself to come back to racing straight away, as motherhood is a complete jump into the unknown. I know that I am still relatively young, so in a couple of years if I decide I want to return to professional cycling, it is still very possible, and there is time to do so.
“It’s so nice to have worked with Lizzie this year and see how she has approached parenthood and her very balanced and successful return to the workplace!”
Van Twisk said she wants to combine her two passions – cycling and art – in future and would love to stay in the sport but with a more creative outlet.