Two riders bid early farewell to 2012 Tour

Two riders bid early farewell to 2012 Tour

LA TOUSSUIRE, France - Agence France-Presse
Two riders bid early farewell to 2012 Tour

Alessandro Petacchi will not participate the rest of the Tour de France. EPA Photo

Dutch climbing specialist Robert Gesink and Italian sprinter Alessandro Petacchi will not resume racing on the Tour de France’s 12th stage on July 13 after leaving the race for different reasons.

Rabobank rider Gesink, a fifth place finisher in 2010, has been suffering from sore ribs since a crash earlier in the race.

His team announced his withdrawal at the end of the difficult 148 km ride from Albertville to the ski station of La Toussuire where he finished over 30 minutes behind race leader Bradley Wiggins of Britain.

“When I breathe in deeply, I’m in pain. I have really sore muscles around my ribs,” he said.

The Italian Lampre team meanwhile will be without star sprinter Petacchi for the rest of the race after the Italian veteran finished outside the permitted time limit for the stage.

Petacchi, who has won stages in all three Grand Tours, crashed on the descent of the Croix de Fer climb 50 km from the finish and has suspected broken ribs, Lampre said.

2012 Tour,