Thomas Löfkvist (IAM Cycling) announced he will retire from professional cycling after Sunday’s Giro di Lombardia.
The 30-year-old Swede has raced professionally since 2004, when he signed his first contract with FDJ.com. He made his mark as a reliable worker and a solid time-trialist.
“This year, I was never able to race at my level,” said Löfkvist. “My body, for some reason, was tired. I suffered a lot because it’s hard to work through a race knowing that you are not at your true level. I did not want to take up a place in the squad just to say I was still there. My body has told me to stop, but the final decision was not made on a whim. I have been thinking a lot about it all season and my mindset has evolved throughout the year. As I always find myself in harmony with my choices and decisions, I can hang up my wheels without bitterness or regret.
“There will probably be moments more painful than others, especially during those times when I would normally start training or leaving for camp. But I will not be alone and I will be surrounded by my family, so I believe I will be able to overcome these brief passages with equanimity.”
During his 11-year career, Löfkvist won Swedish national time trial and road championships in 2004 and 2006, respectively. In 2007, he won the stage 3 time trial at Critérium International. He also wore the pink jersey in the Giro d’Italia for a day in 2009, thanks to a victory in the team time trial with his High Road squad.
“After Lombardy, I will hang up my bike, but I still wish to leave with a sense of accomplishment,” said the Swede, as he looks ahead to his final day as a professional.