Cycling: Pinot abandons Vuelta before stage three

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Tour de France
Tour de France

(Reuters) - French rider Thibaut Pinot has abandoned the Vuelta a Espana after only two stages, his team said on Thursday.

Pinot has not recovered from the back injury that scuppered his chances at the Tour de France last month.

"Despite the rest period he observed, the two first stages of the Vuelta have shown Thibaut Pinot continues to suffer from the back pain he experienced after his crash on the first day of the Tour de France in Nice," Groupama-FDJ said in a statement.

"With regard to the next season, priority is given to his complete recovery: he will not take the start of the third stage this Thursday and will no longer compete in 2020."

Pinot was already 25 minutes behind race leader Primoz Roglic after the opening two stages.

(Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Christian Radnedge)