Max Sciandri, an assistant director for BMC Racing, declined an offer to become the national team coach for the Italian Cycling Federation.
The news was announced by BMC president and general manager Jim Ochowicz before Tuesday’s stage 4 at the Giro d’Italia, where Sciandri is serving as a co-director for the squad.
Sciandri said it was a tough decision for him to make, but ultimately he opted to stay with the U.S.-based team to continue developing younger riders like Taylor Phinney.
“This was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make because it was so important to me and it’s such an important role for my home country,” Sciandri said in a team release. “I reached out and touched something that was pretty untouchable for me. But I didn’t grab it. I let it go. And that’s difficult. But it is only because I am working with a great team that has a tremendous program with a terrific bunch of riders, staff and managers.”
Sciandri raced professionally for 16 years and earned stage wins at the Tour de France (1995) and the Giro d’Italia (1991, 1992, 1994). He also won a bronze medal at the 1996 Olympics.
The Italian said he was honored to be considered for the job but that the timing did not work out, given his current situation.
“I think there’s a right time for everything,” Sciandri said. “Unfortunately, the timing at the moment doesn’t fall into place with the projects I am already working on that I want to see through to completion.”