It was Tejay van Garderen of Van Avermaet's BMC team that broke the news on Twitter. The news does not come as a surprise. Van Avermaet hesitated to take part this year as his first child is expected next Sunday, the day that the riders will race on the Champs Elysées in Paris.
Van Avermaet is one of the few Flemish success stories of this year's Tour winning a stage last Friday after doing well in several other stages.
Van Avermaet is flying home to Belgium this afternoon: "It's time to leave the Tour. I wanted to stay as long as possible to support BMC, but now I can be of more use at home."