Sam Bennett has withdrawn from the coming weekend’s World Championships road race as he continues to recover from his ongoing knee injury.
He will not race for the Irish team as he declared that he needed more time to get back to full race fitness.
Bennett had already turned out for Ireland at the European Championships in Trento, Italy, and he had raced for his commercial team Deceuninck-Quickstep at the Kampioenschap van Vlaanderen and Gooikse Pijl, though he did not finish any of the events.
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"It is always an honour to represent Ireland on the international stage. However, unfortunately competing in this year’s World Road Championships will not be possible,” Bennett said in a Cycling Ireland statement.
“I am very happy to be back racing pain-free and with each race I know my fitness levels and race sharpness are improving. However, at this stage, a gruelling 260km+ race is probably a step too far.”
Bennett has been at odds with Deceuninck-QuickStep manager Patrick Lefevere over his injury, and the 30-year-old sprinter was replaced by Mark Cavendish for the Tour de France when he dropped out at the last minute. He is due to join Bora-Hansgrohe next season, and Lefevere has said he is determined to include Bennett at every opportunity until the end of the current season.
“I wish Eddie Dunbar, Rory Townsend and Ryan Mullen the very best this weekend and will be supporting them from afar,” Bennett added of his Irish teammates.
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