Madrid, July 3: Chris Froome will lead Team Sky’s riders in the upcoming Tour de France cycling race and has his eyes set on a record-equaling fifth victory, his team said on Tuesday, a day after anti-doping proceedings against the Briton were dropped.
Froome, the reigning Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a Espana champion, will be supported by Egan Bernal, Jonathan Castroviejo, Michal Kwiatkowski, Gianni Moscon, Wout Poels, Luke Rowe and Geraint Thomas, Team Sky said, reported Efe.
“I want to make history with a fifth Tour de France win and fourth consecutive Grand Tour,” said Froome, according to Team Sky.
“I am under no illusion about the challenge, but I am feeling ready and I couldn’t ask for a better team to support me,” he added.
A fifth win at this year’s edition of the most important race in the cycling calendar would see Froome join the ranks of Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Miguel Indurain.
“The last twelve months have been the hardest but also the most incredible of my career,” he said, pointing out that he had “never started the Tour de France after riding the Giro d’Italia”.
Froome acknowledged said the Tour was “the biggest race in the year” and he “can’t wait to get racing.”
“Chris is in great shape after the Giro, mentally and physically, and the whole team wants to build on the success we had in Italy,” said team principal Dave Brailsford.
The 105th edition of the Tour de France runs from July 7-29 and will see its riders taking on 21 stages covering a total distance of 3,351 kilometers (2,082 miles).
The route this year is “almost 100 per cent French,” except for a 15-km stretch as part of stage 16 that will dip into neighbouring Spain, according to the race organisers. IANS