Taylor Phinney (29) announces retirement from professional cycling
Oct 17 2019 03:33 am CET

Taylor Phinney (29) announces retirement from professional cycling
Taylor Phinney (29) announces retirement from professional cycling
EF Education First (c)Jojo Harper

EF Education First's Taylor Phinney has announced his retirement from professional cycling.

The American rider will compete for the last time in Japan and then will hang his bike. Phinney's career has been a complete rollercoaster in which he won numerous junior titles, competed in the individual pursuit at the 2008 Olympics, finished fourth in the road race and the time trial of the 2012 London Olympics, completed two Tour de France and finished in the eighth position of Paris-Roubaix last season.

The rider suffered from a career-threatening leg break in 2014, which made him start pondering about the decision that he now takes. "This decision has been something that I've been back and forth struggling with for a long time, and by a long time I mean a couple of years, and ultimately, I feel like my body sort of made this choice for me," said the rider. "I've now been injured longer than I've not been injured as a professional athlete. And I felt that it was a good time to click out and trade in my chips and get out of the casino. The support network that I've had through EF Education First, and then before EF with BMC, has been paramount to being able to stay on the bike and being able to line up for races.

"But at some point, you don't want to just be lining up for races to finish them. It's time to take that energy and put it into something fresh, something new, something unknown. I'm stepping away so that I can be more true to myself, which means to make art, to make music, to create and cultivate. I've kind of had one foot in the sports pool and then one foot in the art pool, and art just won at some point."

Phinney now feels like he has all the chances open for him and he will do all the exploring that he had been wanting to do for some time. "You may or may not see me in an enduro race next year," he commented. "If I'm going to race anything, it's going to be that. I just want to shred, you know? I was born into a cycling family, but I really fell in love with sport through freestyle skiing... Like Jonny Moseley and Shane McConkey. Shane McConkey especially was my number-one hero.

"And I decided to be a cyclist instead of a skier because, somehow, I thought it was safer for my body, and I was also better at it. But now I've sort of had this return to freestyle extreme sports through my mountain bike, and it's... I feel like a 15-year-old again."
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TAYLOR PHINNEY
EF EDUCATION FIRST





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