Pidcock made his announcement after the first stage in the Tour of Britain. The 23-year-old Ineos rider is still recovering from the mountain bike World Championships, in which he did not get further than 4th place last week.
“Honestly, I’ve had a rough week,” says Pidcock. “I had prepared very well for that world championship, but everything went wrong. Before and during the game. No matter how hard I tried to get things under control, something different happened every time.”
“I wanted to win that World Cup and when that didn’t work out, I got hit. For the World Cup in Australia I am not going to miss it. Mentally I can’t muster a new preparation for a world championship at the moment.”
In the Tour of Britain, Pidcock tries to rediscover the joy of cycling. That seems to work. On Sunday he finished 5th in the opening stage, after having to give up the role in the final.
“I had to pee urgently,” says cyclingnews.com. “I could have won today if I hadn’t had that break, although I made another mistake by not moving forward fast enough at the end. But that doesn’t detract from our ambition to win this Tour of Britain.”
The Tour of Britain could well be Pidcock’s last road party of the year. So no World Championship on the road and he also has doubts about his cyclocross season. It could well be that Pidcock will not defend his world title in the field early next year.
“I want to properly prepare for the classics in the spring of 2023. I don’t know to what extent the Hoogerheide World Cup course suits me. It seems to be drier and faster every year. With opponents such as Wout van Aert and Mathieu van der That will be difficult.”
“But in my head I actually want to ride less. In a full cross season, road season with Tour de France and World Cup I don’t feel like it. I want to be more selective in my program. I have to look at it all again.”
Pidcock is not the first to cancel (or not be allowed to participate) for/to the World Championships on the road in Australia. He went before – among others – Tour winner Jonas Vingegaard, Mads Pedersen, Dylan Teuns and Fabio Jakobsen.