Ileave the day Rigoberto Urn, one of the riders with the most character and personality in the history of Colombia and the international peloton, says goodbye. And although he says he still loves cycling, family, age, health and many other aspects led him to make the decision for this to 2024.
The announcement was made only the day the Tour Colombia 2.1 2024 endeda race in which the season began for many high-level drivers such as Nairo Quintana (Movistar Team), Egan Bernal (Colombian National Team), Richard Carapaz (EF Education EasyPost), Mark Cavendish (Astana Kazakhstan) and the same 'Rigo' (Education EasyPost). Hours after the last stage in Bogotá, with the publication of an extensive interview on his team's channels and on the news program Noticias RCN, the news was announced.
And in addition to talking about his career and the reasons for this decision, Urn's tears came when mentioning moments in his life such as his father's death and what he experienced in these more than 20 years on a bicycle.
Why is Rigoberto Urn retiring from cycling?
A few weeks after turning 37, with a career that took him from local cycling in Colombia to the main races in the world, Rigoberto Urn revealed that in 2024 he will have his last year as a professional cyclist. This is how the official EF Education EasyPost video began: “Making this decision is a very difficult decision. The truth is that it is very scary”.
In the short video, which served as the opening for an extensive conversation published on the cast's YouTube, the voice of the double runner-up in the Giro d'Italia (2013 and 2014) and also second in the Tour de France (2017):
Cycling gave me everything in life, I am also aware that everything in life has a cycle and there are things that end. I only have gratitude to the team, to all the people who were always (there)… There are many people, during these 20 years I have had many coaches, many colleagues, who have always been there to help.
The fear of what is to come is something that those born in Urrao did not cultivate, they recognize it with personality and sincerity, common characteristics of cyclists:
Calm, but very scary. Many years have passed, almost 23 years in which my goal was to get up, ride a bike, have a racing calendar, be part of a team, be recognized for what I do and in a moment everything will end and that makes you think. It takes a long time to make the decision because of the fear of what will happen to your life later.
In one of the harshest sentences, but which reflects how he feels about this decision, 'Rigo' explained: “I look at it as if a person dies, that person dies and will never pursue a professional career again. I am aware that everything in life has a cycle and there are things that end.”. And he confessed some aspects that led him to decide to abandon professionalism when his 2024 calendar ends:
The family: they miss a lot of special moments with their children… Age: performance in races counts for me and there is a very strong generation, very young, that has changed a lot in cycling, it is more difficult for one
Furthermore, The silver medalist in road cycling at the London 2012 Olympic Games said it is increasingly difficult to lose time with family.taking care of your diet, missing vacations or training while other companions enjoy their time: “No one is ever ready for a duel, nothing is prepared for there, it's something that has to be faced, it's a theme that we come to talk about and it's not a decision that takes solo. El EF, my team 'Go Rigo, Go', my family…”.
How difficult it is to decide to retire by Rigoberto Urn
“I still like running”'Rigo' clarified and emphasized this so that they wouldn't talk about how he suffers on a daily basis, but he was aware that there are things that have changed over the years and the demands of the highly competitive sport:
It's not that I'm the winningest cyclist, but I was used to being with the first ones, but it's been a while since I've been with them… The sport we practice isn't so good for our health because we force our body until the limit every day, it is a necessary decision and we will dedicate ourselves to another facet
Urn knows he will miss the sport, which is why he will try to join other sports as an amateur, understanding that 19 years in the elite are not left aside from one moment to the next. Furthermore, there will be a psychologist for him and his family, explaining that competition and without focusing energy on the bike Complicated days and tension in the environment may arise.
Of course, Urn will follow races, travel to Europe to be close to cycling and does not rule out remaining connected, taking into account that there are companies and projects that already depend on the sport of cranks and pedals.
As a cyclist, the time has come to say: 'How far we've come'… We don't have a goodbye date. The idea is to be at the Tour de France and a few races later, but the idea is to leave with the team, in a race that we will all decide, together.
In that interview with EF Education-EasyPost channels, there was memories of his childhood, he talked about what cycling meant so he could compete in cycling and then fell in love with the bike. He went through what his arrival in Italy meant and when he was adopted by a family from that country to adapt.
He also did not leave aside the falls, injuries, accidents and the Colombian said that he suffered in the Tour de France 2023 because he did not have the expected performance and health. He even said this, If he had a good memory of what happened to him in his career, he would have retired earlier.
And on the personal and family side, Rigoberto Urn explained that his father's murder was very difficult to overcome, because he didn't even think he would move on, much less reach cycling in Europe. But it happened and now, With the soap opera that airs in Colombia about his entire life, he discovered that he is an example for children, adults and many compatriots.: “I didn't know my story was so cute”.
Rigoberto Urn and his tears when announcing that he will leave cycling in 2024
At the interview with RCN Notíciaswhich would have been recorded some time ago and which had exclusivity as it was the channel with which 'Rigo' signed a contract for the story of the romance of his life, the great Colombian cyclist broke down talking about the decision and with a broken voice. he said:
Yes, I won't go anymore. It's something we talk about as a family, it scares me a lot, but so far… I don't know, I've been talking to the family, the whole team, it scares me a lot and this year we came to the conclusion that it's my time as a professional cyclist. This is the first time I've said this, we gave directions and it makes me feel warm
But One of the most moving moments of this conversation with the Colombian media outlet was the memory of his father, Dom Rigoberto Urn., as they showed him one of the scenes from the soap opera in which the actor Robinson Díaz appears pretending to be him. In this way, memories that move and move him were revived.
For now there is no race or specific date for the cycling world to see Rigoberto Urn race for the last time as a professional, but it will happen in 2024 and it will be a special moment. and with words “Remember that 'Rigo' no longer exists”which ended the interview with his current cast, left a feeling of nostalgia in many who admire him and recognize his career.