Gaviria and De Plus abandon Giro d'Italia
Colombian sprinter Fernando Gaviria and Jumbo Visma rider Laurens de Plus have abandoned the Giro d'Italia.
UAE Team Emirates rider Gavira stepped off early in Stage 7 from Vasto to L'Aquila.
His team revealed Gaviria had been managing pain in his left knee ahead of his withdrawal on Friday, but his abandonment means that the 24-year-old has now failed to finish two of the three Grand Tours he has entered.
Gaviria had gone in to the race as the favourite to win the sprinter's jersey, but failed to win bunch sprints in Stage 2 and Stage 5 and was out-sprinted by Elia Viviani in Stage 3 only to be awarded the win after a ruling of dangerous riding.
The Colombian himself disputed the decision to change the stage winner, saying: "Elia is a great person, he’s always fair. It’s hard to celebrate something like this.
"When he moved to the left, he did it without intention and he was just making his sprint. For me, he is the clear winner of the stage of today. I feel bad for him."
Less than an hour after Gaviria abandoned so did Jumbo-Visma's De Plus.
The Belgian's withdrawal could have larger implications later in the race as he was expected to play a big role in the mountains in support of team-mate and race favourite Primoz Roglic.