Giro d’Italia favourite Remco Evenepoel pulls out of race after positive COVID test

Giro d’Italia leader and favourite Remco Evenepoel had to withdraw from the race on Sunday after testing positive for coronavirus.

Evenepoel had won the day’s individual time trial to reclaim the leader’s pink jersey.

But his Soudal Quick-Step team later announced that the world champion had returned a positive test for COVID-19 after the end of Sunday’s ninth stage.

“I am really sorry to be leaving the race,” Evenepoel said.

“As part of the team’s protocol, I took a routine test, which unfortunately was positive.

“My experience here has been really special and I was looking forward to competing over the next two weeks. I can’t thank enough the staff and the riders who sacrificed so much in preparation for the Giro. I will be cheering them on over the next two weeks.”

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