By Rob Jones, Special to VeloNews.com
Roland Green (Trek-VW), the former world cross-country mountain-bike champion and World Cup champ, is heading home from Europe and will skip this week’s World Cup final in Kaprun, Austria.
According to his team manager, Eric Wallace, “the prostate infection he has had is not clearing up, and the course of antibiotics he is on means that he is tired and unable to sleep. We decided that it was best just to send him home so that he can get healthy for the road world’s.”
Green has been named to the Canadian time-trial squad for the world road championships in Hamilton, where he will join national champion Eric Wohlberg. Green will spend the next few weeks at home in Victoria, recovering and preparing for the time trial on October 8.
Green has had a very frustrating season, although it began well with the Tour de Langkawi in Malaysia back in February, where he finished fourth overall and won the best-climber’s jersey. In April, he won the Sea Otter Classic, and seemed well on his way to another strong season as the world champion.
However, a crash at the Tour of Georgia in late April resulted in a shoulder injury that nagged him through the spring and summer World Cup and NORBA circuits. He seemed to be recovering well later in June and July (when he won the Canadian nationals and the NORBA event at Mt. Snow), but again misfortune struck when he had a brush with shingles and chicken pox, followed by a prostate infection.
While Green was able to put in a strong performance for one lap in the team relay at the world’s a week ago, leading Canada to a bronze medal, it was obvious he did not have the endurance to challenge for a third consecutive cross-country world title, dropping back from the front of the race by the second lap of the eight lap race, and eventually finishing 19th.