Van Aert leaves Tour de France to attend the birth of his son
Wout van Aert has been one of the main protagonists of the Tour de France 2023 for his combative character at the head of the powerful Jumbo Visma and his participation in order that Jonas Vingegaard has practically won the race with 4 days to go. But as he advanced in June, the 28-year-old Belgian will not make it to Paris and is leaving to see the birth of his son. "I have no intention of missing it."
Wout van Aert retires from the Tour to see the birth of his son
It has been one of the controversial issues this Tour and much has been said about whether a professional cyclist should abandon the race for the birth of a child, but the truth is that Wout van Aert had already warned before starting and it is also true that little more could be asked of the Belgian to do for his team. He has been one of the key pieces of the Jumbo Visma and in the absence of a stage victory, which he has sought on more than one occasion, he has been one of the protagonists of the Tour 2023.
#TDF2023 @WoutvanAert has left the Tour de France to be with his wife Sarah who will give birth to their second child soon. More in the interview recorded yesterday morning. pic.twitter.com/WWA7uoCVz4— Team Jumbo-Visma cycling (@JumboVismaRoad) July 20, 2023
"As everyone knows Sarah is pregnant. Things are starting to be a bit tight at home. In consultation with the team, we have decided that my place is now at home. We have been seeing the doctor at home for the last few weeks and he has assessed that labour is imminent. That's why we have made this decision. On the one hand, it's a strange feeling, but it's not a dilemma. It's an easy decision." "I always thought I would go home when my wife indicated that she needed me. That time has come. So in that respect, it's not a dilemma."
"I told the boys at dinner last night. I am delighted they have all understood the decision and are one hundred percent behind me. These seven guys will perform well for the rest of the Tour. Everything will be fine."
"I started the Tour hoping to make it to Paris. I was in touch in home every day. My wife had a short line to the doctor. We had agreed that if she was closing to giving birth, and me being in the Tour no longer felt comfortable, I would go home. In agreement with the team, we knew that was how we would handle it."
"I often had the legs to win the stage, but it didn't happen. It gives me mixed feelings. Results are one thing; the feeling in the bike is another."
Wout van Aert's next big date is expected to be August 5th at the World Championships.