Two of Switzerland's top cyclists, Alex Zülle and Sven Montgomery, have announced that they won't be taking part in Sunday's World Road Cycling Championships being held in the French town of Plouay.
Zülle is still exhausted after his efforts at the Olympic games in Sydney, while Montgomery is suffering from a bad cold.
Pierre Bourquenoud from Fribourg and the Ticinese cyclist, Felice Puttini, will take their places in the race. The Swiss champion, Patrick Calcagni, has also been lined up for the race-against-the-clock.
Switzerland's hopes in Plouay rest on the shoulders of two competitors in the Espoirs-category for young talent: Fabian Cancellara who has been crowned the Junior World Champion on two occasions, and Nicole Brändli who came third in the European championships.
However, 19-year-old Bernese Cancellara won't have an altogether easy run in the under 23-year-old's category. On the other hand, he has proven over the past few weeks that he can hold his own against older competitors
In fact, Cancellara was even able to come second in the race-against-the clock at the Belgian Grand Prix des Nations. His compatriot, Nicole Brändli won a bronze medal at the Polish championships.
Plouay will give her a second chance after coming home empty handed from the Sydney Olympics.
swissinfo with agencies