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Retiring Porte eyeing Giro stage win in final season

Richie Porte has set his sights on a first Giro d'Italia stage win in May as the Australian looks to bring a successful end to a cycling career that has seen him on the Tour de France podium.

The 37-year-old Ineos Grenadiers rider announced late last year that the 2022 season would be his last as a member of the professional peloton and he hopes to go out on a high at the race where he first made his name in 2010.

"I'd love to win a stage of the Giro," Porte told The Melbourne Age.

"My first Giro I ended up in the pink jersey, which is still to this day, it's like what, 12 years ago, but still a massive career highlight, or one of the career highlights."

Porte eventually finished seventh that year having held the leader's pink jersey for three stages, while his best finish at one of cycling's three grand tours came when he finished third at the Tour de France in 2020.

Then he stood on the podium alongside winner Tadej Pogacar and second-placed Primoz Roglic before following that up last year with victory at the prestigious Criterium du Dauphine.

Despite his designation as one of Ineos Grenadiers' team leaders for last summer's Tour, Porte fell short of challenging as Pogacar successfully defended his title.

"Pogacar (was) a massive favourite, but then we had four guys, myself included, who probably could have really done something in the race, but I didn't enjoy having that pressure, then not having the support either," said Porte.

"I also got what I wanted out of the Tour in 2020 when I podiumed.

"That was something I was always striving for and then to finally get it, I don't feel like I have that much business with the Tour.

"Yeah, sure I would have loved to have won an individual stage, but I can retire happy having not done that. It's something I would have loved to have done, but it didn't happen."

(Reporting by Michael Church in Hong Kong; Editing by Edmund Klamann)

Source: Reuters


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