Yaroslav Popovych pulls out of Tour

Updated: July 12, 2011, 1:43 PM ET
Associated Press

AURILLAC, France -- The RadioShack team is down to six riders at the Tour de France after Yaroslav Popovych pulled out because of a fever. The Ukrainian ran a fever Sunday and felt worse on Monday's rest day.

RadioShack lost two key riders earlier when Janez Brajkovic of Slovenia and Chris Horner of the U.S. had to leave the race after crashes.

"It's unbelievable, I don't know what else I can say. There's nothing we can do, it's one thing after another," RadioShack manager Johan Bruyneel told The Associated Press next to his team bus.

"We tried to keep Popovych in the race, but he was sick and he had a little fever. It went a little better and then yesterday evening he started to have a fever again." He said his temperature was 102 degrees.

German rider Andreas Kloeden started Tuesday's 10th stage from Aurillac to Carmaux despite muscle pains in his lower back. Bruyneel expects him to continue riding.

"He got a big hit on his lower back, that's definitely not a good spot," Bruyneel said. "I don't think we're going to be down to five (riders), but the biggest thing is that Kloeden is not going to be at his full potential."

Kloeden's climbing will be hampered by his sore back when the race reaches the Pyrenees on Thursday.

"If you're hit at a place where you generate all the power, that's a problems in the mountains," Bruyneel said.


Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press