Team GB gold medallist and Ineos Grenadiers' rider Tom Pidcock will reject the chance to compete at the Giro d'Italia in favour of a return to mountain bike action at the World Cup events this month.
The 22-year-old British rider will compete in two mountain biking events in May, one in Germany and one in the Czech Republic. The former was the scene of his first UCI World Cup race last year, while the latter was the venue for his maiden victory in the elite category.
Pidcock will return to the mountain bike for the first time since Tokyo 2020 where he competed in the cross-country discipline, striking a memorable gold for Team GB, before achieving further success in the Cyclocross at the start of this year.
Tour de France
Thomas part of three-pronged Ineos leadership at Tour de France, Pidcock makes debut
Back then, Pidcock's team had suggested their man would compete at the Giro, the first Grand Tour of the year which starts this Friday however, there appears to have been a change of heart with the rider swapping the road surface for the mountain terrain.
Ineos revealed their starting list for the Giro this week with Richard Carapaz, Ben Swift and Richie Porte all set to feature, with Pidcock making way. He featured at the Liege-Bastogne-Liege one-day race in April, after which he was spotted testing out a stretch of cobblestones that are set to feature at the Tour de France in July.
With current Giro champion Egan Bernal continuing to recover from serious injury, it remains to be seen whether the Colombian will return to the saddle in France. This could see Pidcock make the cut for the second Grand Tour of the year, but his focus will be on mountain bike competition for the foreseeable.
In March, the British cyclist made a welcome return to the sport having been suffering with health issues, stating that he wasn't sure when he would be back to his "normal self" but was hopeful that it would be "as soon as possible".
The team and rider presentation for the Giro d'Italia takes place on Wednesday ahead of the main event which begins in Hungary on Friday.

Pidcock wins world cyclo-cross title, crosses line in Superman salute

- - -
Don't miss a stage with all the action from the presentation to the last pedal available to watch on Eurosport and Discovery+.
Tour de France
Ineos rider Pidcock looking to go to Tour de France for the first time
15/06/2022 AT 12:41
Giro d'Italia
Power of Sport - Giro d'Italia 2022 created history
02/06/2022 AT 10:30