Froome softens stance on 2015 Tour


Published: Tuesday 11th November 2014 by The News Editor

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Chris Froome’s stance on riding the 2015 Tour de France could be softening after he initially hinted at a reluctance to ride the race.

The 2013 winner was absent when the route for next year’s race was announced last month and suggested he may skip the Tour to instead target May’s Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a Espana, which begins in August.

It seems inconceivable that Team Sky would allow its best rider to skip the sport’s most high-profile race next July and one in which Froome would be among the favourites, but his comments put his participation in doubt.

But, in an end of year interview with the Team Sky official website, Froome suggested he wanted to lead the Tour once more.

“Looking to next year, my key goal is just returning to good condition and being at the front of a race again,” the 29-year-old said on

“That’s a really big motivation for me. Whether it’s the Tour or any other race, it’s what I love doing.

“I love racing and being able to compete at the front – to be with a team of guys who you enjoy being with, and who you work together well with.

“That’s what gets me through the winter when I’m riding those long hours on my own.”

Froome abandoned the 2014 Tour with a broken hand and fractured wrist following three crashes in two days. He responded by finishing second in the Vuelta to Alberto Contador.

After a period of rest and recuperation in which he got married and was able to reflect on 2014, Froome is now keen to resume training for 2015.

“I’m actually really hungry to start training again and keen to get back going,” added Froome, who will once again spend the winter training in Kenya, South Africa and Monaco.

“The Tour was a disappointment but I’ve still got a few victories I can be happy about this year.

“Also finishing the Vuelta off in such a decent way, after having all the setbacks – that for me was probably more important than anything else.

“It means I’ll be able to go forward into next year without starting from a negative position. I can go in with a clean slate and give it my best shot.

“I think the biggest point of the year for me were the first few stages of the Tour. Starting up there in Yorkshire was something I’ll never forget. It was massive and an incredible experience.

“Coming in as the previous winner and having that home support was huge.

“In terms of performance and satisfaction, I think the Vuelta was definitely the one. It left me with the best feeling.”

Vincenzo Nibali succeeded Froome as the winner of the Tour’s yellow jersey with a dominant victory in the 2014 race.

The Italian will be back to defend his title when the race begins in Utrecht on July 4 and is unlikely to target a Giro-Tour double.

Nibali told “I honestly don’t think I’ll do the Giro d’Italia.

“I said I’d do the Giro if I have to, but if I ride it, I want to ride it to win it.

“At Astana we’ve also got Fabio Aru, who is more suited to the Giro d’Italia than the Tour de France.

“And so if I ride the Giro, I’d overshadow him. So the team wants Aru to ride the Giro and I ride the Tour. I understand that choice.”

While Froome hinted at frustration at the Tour omitting a long time-trial, Nibali is happy with the route.

“I like the route of the Tour de France because it’s similar to this year’s route but with even less time trialling,” he added.

“I couldn’t have asked for much more and the route was perhaps the final factor on deciding my goals for 2015 and again targeting the Tour de France.”

Published: Tuesday 11th November 2014 by The News Editor

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