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Giro d'Italia

Romain Bardet back to training for first time since Giro d’Italia abandon

The Frenchman left the Giro d'Italia in the second week after falling sick.

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SANTUARIO DEL CASTELMONTE, Italy (VN) — Romain Bardet (Team DSM) has returned to racing for the first time since abandoning the Giro d’Italia a week ago.

Bardet was sitting in fourth overall and was one of the major favorites for victory when he pulled out of the race during stage 13.

Unfortunately for Bardet, the illness that forced him to drop out of the Giro d’Italia left him unable to return to the bike until this Thursday. He has now begun training again, but how and when he will be able to return to racing is still unknown, for now.

Also read: Romain Bardet abandons Giro d’Italia

“We have a base for him where we go in the next couple of months, but we have to take it step by step and see how he comes through the next week or two,” Team DSM coach Matt Winston told VeloNews. “He only got back on the bike yesterday so he’s not in intensive training. We have to just see and take it step-by-step.

“He was ill for quite a few days afterward, he’s back on the bike now and we start the recovery on the bike. It was a really nasty virus that he had, it for sure not an easy one.”

Bardet had become ill during stage 12 from Parma to Genova, but he reached the finish line and hoped to be able to pull through it.

However, the bug that he caught resulted in a bad night for the Frenchman and he looked pale and exhausted as he sat on the side of the road before getting into the team car midway through stage 13.

“He was ill, he came through the stage [12] and then he was up all night being sick and with diarrhea, and the next day it continued, and it continued for the next three or four days afterward,” Winston explained.

With several days of illness and no training, it’s hard to know for Team DSM just how much form Bardet has lost over the last week. The team is not making any plans for his return to racing just yet.

Bardet had the Tour de France penciled into his calendar and it was set to make a call on his participation after the Giro was completed. It’s still provisionally on there but only time will tell if he lines up in Copenhagen in July.

“In the short term, no. We need to get back to training and see how he is when he gets back to full training,” Winston said when asked if he knew when Bardet would race again.

“We were going to review [the Tour de France] after the Giro and see where we’re at so we’ll keep that process going.”