Caleb Ewan "not sick" insist Team Jayco AlUla: "He is lacking a bit of top-end speed”

Big things were hoped and expected for Caleb Ewan at the 2024 Giro d'Italia. Despite numerous sprint opportunities in the first 18 stages, the Australian has been consistently struggling to get himself into winning contention for the sprints, leading to some to believe he may be battling illness.

Speaking to Cycling News however, Team Jayco AlUla's Director of High Performance and Racing Matt White dispelled these rumours, pointing instead to Ewan just not quite being at the top of his game currently. “He's not sick. I think his condition in general is really good but he is lacking a bit of top-end speed,” explains the Australian.

With a best finish of 6th on stage 5, when the breakaway took the spoils, in the sprints that actually mattered, Ewan's best result actually came in the most recent bunch sprint, with an 8th placed finish on stage 18 in Padova. “It was pretty messy. There was a rush for the corner with 400 metres to go, I was on my own there and got swamped in the corner," the 11-time Grand Tour stage winner reflected regretfully in his post-stage interview. "I was just too far back again.”

“Obviously they've been pretty hectic sprints, and in some of the sprints you would like to have them dialled in a bit better. But we’ve got one more chance,” White continues, referring to the expected sprint finale in Rome on stage 21. “This is the first time he's actually ever tried to finish the Giro. He always used the Giro as a stepping stone to the Tour, which meant hopping off after 10 days, 12 days, and never, getting through the mountains. Sunday’s 222-kilometre mountain stage to Livigno was the biggest day of his career. Caleb has used altitude training with success in the past, and as I said his condition is good. We're just not sprinting as we would have liked.”

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