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Cervélo’s sprinters leave Vuelta a España

Cervélo TestTeam is down to five riders in its final grand tour following the departure of both of the team’s sprinters.

Thor Hushovd did not start Wednesday’s time trial at the Vuelta a España to prepare for the upcoming world championships while Theo Bos crashed out of the time trial.

The veteran Norwegian won a stage in the first week and rode through more than two full weeks of the Spanish tour before deciding he didn’t want to go too deep ahead of the worlds next month in Australia.

“Thor is really tired, he went really deep in this Vuelta and he decided to stop the Vuelta,” said Cervélo TestTeam sport director Philippe Mauduit. “He still has three weeks before the worlds, he should be OK for the world championships. He will recover this week and we’ll see how he can train for 14 days.”

Bos collided with a photographer’s motorcycle was parked on the side of the road. He was transported to a local hospital with injuries to his ribs and back.

“What happened to Theo is unbelievable. I saw him approaching the motorbike of a photographer that was well parked on the right side of the road and I thought he was going to profit from the protection from the windm but he was head down, he didn’t see the obstacle and he went straight to it,” said Cervélo sport director Philippe Mauduit. “It’s been violent. He’s gone to hospital but fortunately, nothing is broken.”

Carlos Sastre, meanwhile, lashed out in public at Cervélo’s choice of riders for its final grand tour. In a statement released Tuesday, the 2008 Tour de France champion wondered why he didn’t see more support during the Vuelta.

“As I mentioned at the beginning of this Vuelta and throughout the month of August, this was not the team that I wanted and it wasn’t a balanced team in any sense of the word,” Sastre wrote on his personal web page, a day before the Hushovd and Bos departures. “Today, three riders have gone home, something that only confirms my opinion. I asked for riders who were going to be in the race until the end, not just for part of it. To not have the team that I wanted 100 percent, to play in the tactical battle is frankly complicated for many reasons.”

Sastre sits ninth overall at 4:13 back.

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