Is Froome ready for the Tour?

The Briton did not clear the doubts about his state of form in the recent Dauphiné, where he finished almost an hour and a half behind the winner.

Is-Froome-ready-for-the-Tour?

"I feel better and better as the race progresses. I already feel an improvement over Occitania, Tour de l'Ain ... The progress I have made so far is very encouraging, I am optimistic for the Tour." These were some of the phrases that Chris Froome left during the five stages of the Criterium del Dauphiné, words that far from correspond to the moment of form shown by the British in a French round that crowned the Colombian Daniel Felipe Martínez.

And it is that Froome, who dreams of conquering his fifth Grande Boucle (starts on August 29) this course, signed one of the worst performances that are remembered as a professional (regardless of dropouts) when he finished 71st in the general classification, neither more nor less than 1 hour and 26 minutes from the winner. A very poor background and not at all encouraging, especially if we take into account for the Tour that as soon as the road stung up in the last kilometers of the Dauphiné stages, Froomey could barely enter the relief of his teammates and thus help Egan Bernal. For his part, Geraint Thomas, champion in 2018 and second in 2019, also showed a very poor level less than two weeks after the start in Nice (37th, 53 minutes) .

This is why the state of form of both corridors within the Ineos team is of great concern, since if they want to face the powerful Jumbo-Visma block they will need all their troops to be at the highest level. And the Norwegian Gabriel Rasch, director of the British team, did not hide his discomfort in Cyclingweekly: "Froome definitely needs to step up. The same with Geraint, he also needs to step up. They have not been good enough here." Despite the criticism, perhaps with a motivating background for both, Rasch concluded with an optimistic note for the start of the Tour: "They have not arrived yet, but I am optimistic that they will be one step above in Nice" .

The Jumbo-Visma, light years away

The sensations and the numbers are worrying, but even more so when in front of them they have a rival they did not have in recent years. This is the Jumbo-Visma, which gave a true recital of control and power during the Dauphiné, well above the general performance shown by the men of Ineos.

Cotton does not deceive. Despite the enormous effort expended by the gregarious that Primoz Roglic had at his service in the French race, all of them finished ahead of Froome in the general: Dumoulin (7th), Kuss (10th), Van Aert (32nd) and Gesink (56th ), apart from Kruijswijk, Martin and Roglic himself, who had to abandon the race at different stages. Except for an ecatomb, the Kenyan-born will be part of the eight Ineos riders on the Tour with these conditions, despite recent siren calls that put him out of the Ineos formation for the appointment. Has the concern already been transferred to Israel after undertaking his transfer?

Photos from as.com

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