Ten days to the Tour start in Copenhagen: five riders look ahead
Today, Team Jumbo-Visma’s Tour de France selection was revealed. The trio Jonas Vingegaard, Wout van Aert and Primoz Roglic was already announced earlier. The five other riders react to their selection.
Steven Kruijswijk will appear at the start of the Tour de France for the seventh time this year. "I am looking forward to it very much. Each Tour participation is exceptional. I'm excited to ride the Tour de France with this team. I want to contribute to the squad's ambitions to go for the yellow and green jersey, especially in the second and third weeks. Then it will go uphill and I will assist Primoz and Jonas as much as possible."It's no surprise that the Dutchman is looking forward to the stages that include longer cols. "And I'm especially looking forward to the stage to Alpe d'Huez. That's a mythical mountain. I have great and less great memories of it. Riding up a climb with many people standing on the side is always special. Especially if you ride at the front of the race."
Unlike Kruijswijk, it is Nathan Van Hooydonck's first Tour de France participation. "It is a childhood dream come true and an important step in my career. Especially within this team, it is one of the most coveted spots in the peloton. I've been working super hard on myself and my fitness in recent weeks to be able to assist our three leaders as well as I can."
"I will support the team where I can, as long and as much as possible"
Van Hooydonck thinks the team knows what it has in store for him. "Last year, I won Primoz's confidence in the Vuelta and I built on it this year in Paris-Nice. I also owe my selection to my good spring. I don't want to see this as a reward but as my merit. And that the team gives me recognition. Regarding the team's ambitions, there is a lot of pressure on our shoulders. The first week is already hectic, with many hazardous spots. It's up to me to ensure the team gets through those well. I will also take on the early work in the stages, if necessary. I will support the team where I can, as long and as much as possible."
Tiesj Benoot considers it an honour to be part of the Tour selection. "Especially since it's only my first year with the team. I'm really looking forward to it. The past races have gone well, I'm confident and now the year's most important goal awaits us."
"We are going for the best possible result and I hope to play an important role in achieving that"
The Belgian aims to perform at a high level for three weeks. "I'll focus on the process and riding as well as possible. We are going for the best possible result and I hope to play an important role in achieving that. In the first week, I have the important task of keeping the leaders out of trouble and bringing them in safely before we head into the mountains. I hope to be an important added value there."
For Sepp Kuss, it is his third Team Jumbo-Visma Tour selection. "I am very happy to be riding my third Tour de France. I have great memories of the previous editions. One of the most memorable is always being part of a very strong team and this year is no different."
"I am happy that I got the team's confidence and now I will have to prove myself"
Christophe Laporte is also happy to be part of such a strong Tour team. "I am very happy with my selection. We are going to the Tour de France with a great team. I had indicated that I would like to ride the Tour, but we have so many good riders on the team that I really had to earn my place in the selection. I am happy that I got the team's confidence and now I will have to prove myself. We have a lot of goals. I will be able to assist Primoz and Jonas, especially in the first week. Then we will ride on roads that suit me. And I will assist Wout in the sprints during the whole Tour. We have ridden almost all our races together since the beginning of the season. We have a connection."
It's the first time a Frenchman has been in Team Jumbo-Visma's Tour selection. "It's very special. As a Frenchman, it's important to be able to ride the Tour and I'm thrilled to have that opportunity. It's also an honour to be selected to ride the Tour for such a big team with big goals."