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- Taylor Phinney of EF Education First Pro Cycling will be retiring at the end of this season. His last race will be October 20 at the Japan Cup Cycle Road Race.
- Phinney recovered from a serious leg injury in 2014, but has decided to retire from pro cycling to devote more time to art and music.
- Phinney is a two-time world champion and a three-time Olympian.
After nine years racing in the WorldTour, 29-year-old Taylor Phinney will retire from the sport at the close of the season, according to an announcement his team, EF Education First Pro Cycling, posted on Wednesday.
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He’ll pin on his final number at the Japan Cup Cycle Road Race on Sunday.
A graduate of Axel Merckx Trek-Livestrong development program, Phinney spent the last three years racing for EF Education First after a six-year stint with BMC Racing. The son of cycling legends Davis Phinney and Connie Carpenter, he has enjoyed an illustrious career with plenty of highs and challenging lows, including two Tours de France, wearing the coveted Maglia Rosa at the Giro d’Italia, two world champion titles, and three Olympic Game appearances in both track and road, where he finished fourth in the road race and time trial in 2012 London Olympics.
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His 2014 season ended with a career-changing tibia and fibula fracture during a 60 mph crash the U.S. National Championships, after which he was told by his doctors he may never race again, according to EF Education First Pro Cycling.
He rode—and raced—again, but the recovery process was long and arduous. During that time, he began to explore a life after cycling through art and music.
“This decision has been something that I’ve been back and forth struggling with for a long time, and by a long time I mean a couple of years, and ultimately, I feel like my body sort of made this choice for me,” Phinney said in an interview posted by his team. “I’m stepping away so that I can be more true to myself, which means to make art, to make music, to create and cultivate…I don’t want to race anymore, but I love riding my bike more now than I did when I started racing.
On Thursday, Phinney posted an update on his Instagram page, where he thanked his fans for their support over his 12-year racing career. While he emphasized that he is “more in love with bikes now” than he had ever been before, he said “in the battle between art and sport, art won.”
Phinney went on to say that he is happy and excited to be able to create his art full-time.
The 2019 season marked a rough one for Phinney: He began 2019 at the Tour of Colombia, but faced a tough Classics season, abandoning nearly all the races. In May, he also saw an early finish at the AMGEN Tour of California after missing the time limit on Stage 5. His last race was Ride London in August before he races Sunday in Japan.