Samuel Dumoulin has announced his retirement at 38 years old.
The Frenchman, who turned pro in 2002, has announced he will ride until the end of the season before calling time on his career.
Ag2r La Mondiale rider Dumoulin, no relation of Dutch superstar Tom, says he had been undecided about retirement plans at the start of the season, but his failing form this year made him reconsider.
In an interview with Ouest France newspaper, Dumoulin said: “At the beginning of the season I had not decided yet but now I know it’s my last year.
“I will stop at the end of the season. It’s hard to find motivation, to train as hard as before.
“And inevitably with age, I also feel that the body doesn’t respond as before.”
Dumoulin’s long career has been punctuated by major wins, the first of which came early in his career on stage two of the 2005 Criterium du Dauphiné.
He went on to win a stage of the Tour de France in 2008, and later three stages o the Volta a Catalunya in 2010 and 2011.
Dumoulin had been part of the 2016 Ag2r Tour de France squad that took Romain Bardet to second place, but he hasn’t ridden a Grand Tour since.
He added: “I’m a rider who often works in the mind, so when there is less motivation it has consequences for the results.
“Nevertheless, I want to finish well and I’ll try to win again.”
Dumoulin joined the pro peloton as a trainee with FDJ in 2001, before moving to Jean Delatour in 2002.
After an initial spell with Ag2r from 2004 to 2007, Dumoulin joined Cofidis for five seasons before returning to Ag2r in 2013, where he will now see out the remaining months of his career.
When asked about the secret of his longevity, Dumoulin said: “I think I know myself well.
“In the race, I always tried to save myself as much as possible. I had a good read of the race, and a solid strong physique, which allowed me to hang on in the all the great races I did.”
Thank you for reading 20 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