Two big names retire from racing

As the World Championships get into full swing Tony Martin, the German time trial specialist, has announced his retirement from racing.

He is the second big name, big character rider to announce their retirement in recent weeks. “Crosswinds” Dan (Martin) announced his retirement on the eve of the Tour of Britain.

Typically it would be easy to describe the pair as stalwarts of the peloton. But they were far more then that.

Tony is completing his racing carer at Jumbo Visma were he changed his role from time trial specialist to that of reliable, level headed domestique. He was also something of an elder of the peloton.

In comments to the press over the weekend he flagged his disappointment that rider safety had not substantially moved on over the last decade.

Tony Martin has yet to indicate whether he intends to remain within the world of cycling.

Like Tony Martin, Crosswinds Dan has been one of those riders who has achieved plenty on the road. Throughout his career it has been a privilege go and go again. His stage six win on the Muur de Bretagne of the 2018 Tour De France is one of my all time favourites (not least because I had sloped off to watch the stage on TV).

Dan has continued to ride in a lead role for Israel Start up Nation. He is one of the great characters of the peloton, renowned in part for his “moaning” though given his success it seems this pessimistic blanket covers a heart that beats with optimism.