Roglic puts Tour de France in his crosshairs
The Slovenian won the red jersey and trophy ahead of Alejandro Valverde (Movistar Team) in dominant fashion. Even with the arrival of grand tour star Tom Dumoulin to Jumbo-Visma in 2020, Roglic let it be known he wants to now target the Tour’s yellow jersey.
“It’s my goal,” Roglic told the Spanish daily MARCA. “I would like to go to the Tour de France to win it. I think that I can do it. I’ve showed the same capacity by winning the Vuelta and having made the podium in the Giro d’Italia.”
In the coming days, 29-year-old Roglic and the Dutch WorldTour team boss Richard Plugge will map out the 2020 season. The Dutch team confirmed its arrival to the top of the echelon this season, hitting podiums in all three grand tours. Dumoulin’s arrival puts an already strong Jumbo-Visma into a higher gear. This year, it proved its progression at the Tour de France with a blistering pace and time trial win ahead of Ineos, and won three other stages. And earlier in the year at the Giro, Roglic won two stages, led the race for five days and placed third overall.
After dominating the Vuelta and performing well at the Giro, the Tour appears to be the logical step for Roglic. He added, “We are going to talk about the plan, but I would like to be in France.”
Already in the 2018 Tour, Roglic rode to fourth overall and won the mountain stage to Laruns. Team-mate Steven Kruijswijk placed fifth behind winner Geraint Thomas (then Team Sky/now Ineos).
However, some followers are asking how the team will manage its numerous captains: Roglic, Dumoulin, Kruijswijk, and helpers like Kuss, Wout Van Aert and Laurens De Plus.
“There are never enough good riders within a team. You can always improve,” Roglic said.
“The arrival of Dumoulin is great news for all of us. The team will be much stronger, for sure. There will be no problem when setting up calendars. The idea is to keep growing to be the best team in the world without having to look at the others.”
The team may not have to worry about the number of cooks in the kitchen. The same questions have been asked of Ineos/Sky in the past, but external factors always play their part.
In the 2018 Tour, Thomas was simply stronger than Froome after the latter had fought back to win a difficult Giro. And in 2019, with Froome out with a leg Fracture and Thomas not at the same level, 22-year-old Bernal took the opening to win the Tour.
Roglic, who gave Slovenia its first grand tour win, immediately turns to putting on the country’s colors for the World Championships in Yorkshire, England, on September 29.
“It’s a good route,” he said. “But we still need to analyse everything because my thoughts have been on winning the Vuelta.”