Steve Cummings has confirmed his retirement from professional cycling at the age of 38.
The British rider told Ned Boulting in his podcast that he has chosen to call time on his career. The former national road and time trial champion said he felt physically ready to continue riding but just couldn’t find an opportunity with a team after being dropped by Dimension Data (now NTT) at the end of this season.
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Cummings said he was “happy to continue, but also happy to stop” after struggling to find a new team at WorldTour or Pro Continental level. He added he was grateful just to have “lived his dream” since his career began on the track in the early 2000s.
A three-time Grand Tour stage winner, Cummings blossomed in the latter part of his career, winning two stages at the Tour de France in 2015 and 2016, having previously won a stage of the Vuelta a España in 2012.
Other major victories include an overall win at the Tour of Britain in 2016, as well as stages in prestigious week-long races, the Critérium du Dauphiné and Tirreno-Adriatico. He also took a remarkable double at the British Road National Championships in 2017, becoming road and time trial champion in the Isle of Man.
Prior to transitioning to full-time on the road in 2005, Cummings enjoyed a successful track career, winning multiple medals in the team and individual pursuit, including a silver medal at the 2004 Olympics, a World title in 2005 and a Commonwealth Games gold medal in 2006.
Having tasted road cycling’s top level in the ProTour with Discovery Channel in 2007, Cummings moved from Pro Conti team Barloworld to the WorldTour in 2010 with Sky Procycling. He stayed with Sky for two years before moving to BMC Racing, where he stayed for the next three years.
Cummings’ most successful period on the road came after joining MTN-Qhubeka in 2015, staying with the team until the end of this year after their change to Team Dimension Data in 2016.
His final season was far from his best as he struggled to make an impact in the first part of the season, before crashing at the Tour of the Basque Country in April and suffering a collarbone break.
He was then surprisingly included in the Dimension Data Tour de France squad in July, before going on to race the Arctic Race of Norway and then the Tour of Britain. Cummings’ final season was cut short however with a crash on stage five of the race; his home stage to and from Birkenhead. He suffered multiple fractured vertebrae in the incident and missed the remaining races of the year as he recovered.