Vasil Kiryienka has announced his retirement from cycling due to a cardiac issue.
The Ineos rider has made the decision following medical advice, calling time on a 15-year career in the peloton.
Kiryienka previously missed the start of the 2019 season due to a cardiac anomaly, then returning to racing at the Tour de Romandie.
The 38-year-old Belarussian had one year remaining on his contract with Ineos, but calls the announcement that he will be ending his time with the team 11 months early a "sad day".
Kiryienka's career highlights include taking the rainbow bands at the 2015 Road World Championships in the individual time trial. He also rode an impressive 20 Grand Tours, taking three stage wins at the Giro d'Italia and one at the Vuelta a España.
"It’s a really sad day for me, but it’s the right decision based on the advice I’ve been given by the medical team," Kiryienka said. "I’ve had a wonderful career and enjoyed every minute racing with this team. It’s been an incredible journey and I am so grateful for all the support I’ve received throughout my whole career."
Ineos boss Dave Brailsford has said the decision was tough to take but "obviously the right one", wishing his rider, who he signed in 2013, all the best for the future.
"It is disappointing for Kiry and for us as a team. He is a true one-off and one of the greatest team riders of his generation. When a rider in a breakaway looked back and saw the open shirted Kiry on the front of the peloton driving the chase they knew their days were numbered," Brailsford said.
"We have been lucky to have him ride with us over the last seven years and are proud to have supported him to some incredible victories: the time trial rainbow bands, his breakaway win at the Vuelta and all of his TT victories in our colours.
"While this is a tough decision to take it is obviously the right one and we support him fully in it. We wish him every success and the team will continue to support him in the future."
Thank you for reading 5 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
Hi. I'm Cycling Weekly's Weekend Editor. I like writing offbeat features and eating too much bread when working out on the road at bike races.
Before joining Cycling Weekly I worked at The Tab and I've also written for Vice, Time Out, and worked freelance for The Telegraph (I know, but I needed the money at the time so let me live).
I also worked for ITV Cycling between 2011-2018 on their Tour de France and Vuelta a España coverage. Sometimes I'd be helping the producers make the programme and other times I'd be getting the lunches. Just in case you were wondering - Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen had the same ham sandwich every day, it was great.
Best cheap deals on power meters in the Christmas Sales 2022
Here are the biggest discounts and the most wallet-friendly models currently available
By Anne-Marije Rook • Published
Millionth Brompton rolls off the assembly line in London and heads straight onto a global tour
Instead of being put on display, the millionth bike will be ridden by thousands of people worldwide
By Simon Smythe • Published
‘It’s a good thing and shows progression of the sport’ - Ben Swift hails changes at British Cycling academy
Ineos Grenadier says putting academy riders in with development teams will encourage development of many skills
By Tom Thewlis • Published
'I know I can do it so I need to make that next level': Ben Turner signs Ineos Grenadiers contract extension
The Classics and another Grand Tour are on the agenda for Doncaster's Big Ben
By Chris Marshall-Bell • Published
Tom Pidcock unsure whether he will defend cyclocross world title in 2023
“I don’t know yet, crossing in the winter and being good in the classics is a difficult combination” Pidcock said
By Tom Thewlis • Published