Cycling

Mike Woods withdraws from Basque Country cycling race in wake of crash

Canadian rider Michael Woods withdrew from the Itzulia Basque Country race Thursday in the wake of a crash near the end of Stage 3.

Canadian teammate James Piccoli also abandons tour event after bruising hand

Canada's Mike Woods, seen here crossing the line at the 2020 La Vuelta, withdrew from the Itzulia Basque Country race after suffering a badly bruised left hand and shoulder during a Stage 3 crash on Wednesday. (Ander Gillenea/Getty Images)

Canadian rider Michael Woods withdrew from the Itzulia Basque Country race Thursday in the wake of a crash near the end of Stage 3.

Woods' team, Israel Start-Up Nation, said the 34-year-old from Ottawa had a badly bruised left hand and shoulder from Wednesday's crash.

Woods said he opted to drop out to preserve his chance of competing in the Ardennes classics one-day races later this month.

"My hand's pretty sore at the moment. So's my neck," Woods said. "And I just think it'd be a bit of a risk to continue racing and a risk to the Ardennes. But I know I'll be back. I know I'll be feeling good in a few days and I'll be good for the Ardennes."

Canadian teammate James Piccoli, meanwhile, crashed during a fast decent during Stage 4 Thursday. The 29-year-old from Montreal suffered a bruised hand and was forced to abandon the race.

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