Laurens de Plus will take an indefinite break from cycling after being diagnosed with a viral illness, Ineos Grenadiers have confirmed.
De Plus has missed large swathes of the 2021 season due to recovery issues, and further medical assessment has discovered an underlying health condition.
“The team has worked hard alongside Laurens to diagnose the illness, with a period of enforced rest now required,” Ineos announced in a statement.

“Laurens has the full support of the team and we are looking forward to seeing him back on the bike soon.”
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It is unclear as to the specific nature of De Plus’ illness, but the news comes as a further blow to the Ineos Grenadiers rider.
The Belgian suffered a tricky debut season with Ineos in 2020 due to injury, having moved to the British-run team from Jumbo-Visma.
And earlier this year he was forced to make himself unavailable for the Tour de France.
“When I came home from the Basque Country (in April) I was very tired,” he revealed earlier this summer.
Even watching TV from the couch was barely possible.
"I had myself examined by the doctor and it turned out that I was overtrained.”
De Plus has commented on his break from cycling, saying:
"The first job for me is to rest, then get back to physical activity step by step.
"The team will help me with regular meetings and medical checks to monitor how I am getting on over the next few months. Thankful for the incredible support Ineos."

Laurens De Plus of Belgium and Team INEOS Grenadiers

Image credit: Getty Images

De Plus had been hoping to return to action at the back-end of the 2021 season, but the latest medical diagnosis means he will have been involved in just 19 days of racing in the calendar year for Ineos.
The Ineos Grenadiers will turn their attention to La Vuelta, where Olympic champion Richard Carapaz is expected to be part of a strong team.
Fellow Olympic champion Tom Pidcock, who won mountain bike gold in Tokyo, says he is expecting to ride the Spanish Grand Tour, but not as a general classification contender.
“I'm in no rush to commit to a Grand Tour," Pidcock told Cycling Weekly.
I mean, the plan is to do the Vuelta now, so tomorrow I'll go out and do a long ride because I'm not going to have that many days [to prepare].
“I'm not in a rush to fully commit to a Grand Tour. I think the thing I've got is time on my side.”

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But Pidcock's fellow Team GB rider Adam Yates will be eyeing a GC bid, with the 28-year-old yet to ride a Grand Tour for Ineos since joining from Mitchelton-Scott (now team BikeExchange) last summer.
The Vuelta gets underway on August 14 with a 7.1km individual time-trial.
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