With a number of riders calling it a day on stage 14 of the Giro d’Italia, former champion Ryder Hesjedal was among the most high profile to abandon.
The queen stage took its toll on the Canadian, who abandoned with around 80km to go with reported stomach problems.
It will be a blow to both the rider and his Trek-Segafredo team, with Hesjedal looking to be on good form in the first two weeks of the race, despite losing time early in the race – sitting 4-48 down in the overall standings.
In previous Grand Tours, Hesjedal has excelled in the third week – including in the 2015 Giro, where he finished fifth overall after a series of breakaway rides in the final seven days.
Trek will now focus their efforts on winning the sprint classification with Giacomo Nizzolo for the second successive season.
Arnaud Démare (FDJ) and Bert De Bakker (Giant-Alpecin) were two of the other high profile riders to climb into team cars early in the stage.