Caleb Ewan (Lotto-Soudal) is expected to miss out on selection for the World Championship road race held on September 25 in Australia.
According to Het Nieuwsblad (opens in new tab)the Lotto-Soudal rider will be left out of the Australian squad completely and won’t be considered as a reserve.
The omission will come as a bitter blow for Ewan who had been targeting the road race at the championships for some time.
Meanwhile, AusCycling released a short statement (opens in new tab) confirming that a full squad announcement will be delayed due to two selection appeals.
AusCycling executive general manager of performance, Jesse Korf, said “The UCI Road World Championships is a pinnacle event in the racing calendar and competition for places in our team is strong,” he added “Two athletes have appealed, as is their right, and we will give the process the time it needs. We anticipate an announcement on the Australian team for the championships to be made next week.”
It’s believed that the head coach of the Australian cycling federation, Rory Sutherland, feels that Ewan’s current condition is not sufficient to challenge at the road race in Wollongong. Michael Matthews (Team BikeExchange-Jayco) is expected to be one of the Australian team’s lead riders.
28-year-old Ewan has had far from an ideal year. The Australian pulled out of the Giro d’Italia in May and called this year’s edition of the Italian Grand Tour the “Giro from Hell”.
Since then the sprinter has struggled for form and visibly suffered at the Tour de France in July after being involved in a heavy-crash.
After going down heavily on stage 13 of the race, Ewan admitted he was struggling for form.
He said, “I feel like I need to catch a break with my luck. It is what it is, and it’s part of being a cyclist. Sometimes you have a run of bad luck and I’m having that now but hopefully it turns soon.”
After the crash, Ewan was paced back into the peloton which resulted in a fine for the Lotto-Soudal man along with the Alpecin-Fenix sports director Christophe Roodhooft. Ewan sat behind the Belgian team’s car for a period of time as he eventually made it back into the main field.
Earlier on in the race, Ewan admitted that he feared missing the time cut on a stage unless his form dramatically improved.