Professional cyclist Antoine Duchesne announces his retirement

Professional cyclist Antoine Duchesne announces his retirement

MISE À DAY

Professional cyclist Antoine Duchesne has announced his retirement from sport at the age of 31. The Quebec and Montreal cycling Grands Prix will be his last career races.  

“It will be my last Grands Prix. I have decided to retire. I reached the level I always wanted. I want to be with my family. It's time to do something else, ”summarized the athlete.

The Olympian from Rio could have continued the adventure in 2023 but he preferred to refuse a contract with his group Groupama-FDJ. The Israel-Premier Tech team was also ready to welcome him. For him, it was important to choose the right time to retire and not to wait too long for the season. 

“You don't see that a lot of riders refusing contracts when they can continue . For me, that's what makes the story better. I am emotional but I have no sadness, ”he said with several pauses and a few tears. 

With a quavering voice, Duchesne said he wanted to celebrate his personal accomplishments. 

“I feel a lot of pride,” he added, followed by a loud shout from his son Jules , only a few months old. 

“When I think back to the little guy from Chicout who left at 17 with a one-way ticket to France, with a dream of one day becoming a professional cyclist. I never thought I would be here 13 years later to tell you that this dream, I had it. » 

Antoine Duchesne competed in the 2016 and 2022 Tour de France. Over the years, his career has been punctuated by several injuries. At the start of the Grande Boucle last June in Denmark, he told Journal how difficult he now found it to leave his family to participate in the events. 

“ I have always said that family is most important and today I act accordingly. It's an end but just one chapter. I choose to stop at the end of my best career season so that the engraving is more beautiful. It's time to experience other trips. Thank you to all of you. It was a crunch of rides! concluded the future retiree.

With a broken hand, Duchesne could participate in his last career race on Sunday in Montreal. A few events in Italy were on his schedule but his body is bruised and it might take some time to heal his wounds.