Three-time world champion Freire calls time on professional cycling

Three-time world champion Oscar Freire, who last won a race in 2010, calls time on his 15-year cycling career

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BOURGES, France (AFP) — Three-time world champion Oscar Freire has finally brought the curtain down on his illustrious career and retired from cycling, his Katusha team confirmed on Thursday.

The 36-year-old Freire, world champion in 1999, 2001 and 2004, has not raced since competing at the world road championships in Valkenburg, Netherlands, on September 23, where he finished 10th in the road race.

The Spaniard, who suffered a broken rib and punctured lung in the Tour de France and was forced to pull out of the London Olympics, has been competing for the past 15 years, but his last win was in the 2010 Paris-Tours classic.

Freire also won Milan-San Remo three times, in 2004, 2007 and 2010.

In the grand tours, Freire won four stages of the Tour de France and seven of the Vuelta a España. He also won the points leader’s green jersey at the Tour de France in 2008.

Freire rode for four different teams during his career: Vitalicio (1998-1999), Mapei (2000-2002), Rabobank (2003-2011) and Katusha (2012). He announced prior to the worlds that he would retire if he did not win a fourth title.