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Ineos Grenadiers has settled on the eight riders it hopes will recapture its Tour de France crown this summer.
Leading quartet Richard Carapaz, Geraint Thomas, Tao Geoghegan Hart, and Richie Porte will be backed by Michal Kwiatkowski, Luke Rowe, Dylan van Baarle, and Jonathan Castroviejo when the Tour rolls out next weekend.
With three grand tour winners in the Tour eight, Ineos Grenadiers did not confirm who would lead the line in France.
Kwiatkowski, Castroviejo, van Baarle, and Rowe will provide both a wealth of experience in Ineos Grenadiers’ bid to overturn the dominant forces of Primož Roglic and Tadej Pogačar at this year’s Tour.
Team principal David Brailsford emphasized that the selection was also founded in Ineos Grenadiers’ commitment to the offensive, open racing tactic that took Geoghegan Hart and Egan Bernal to consecutive Giro d’Italia titles in the past 12 months.
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“We won’t win this Tour by sitting in the wheels,” Brailsford said Friday. “We have the team to make it a racers’ race, take the initiative, seize every opportunity, and make our opposition focus for every kilometer of every stage.”
Ineos Grenadiers go into this year’s Tour with the wind at their backs after taking six stage race victories with six riders in 2021, with Tour leaders Porte, Thomas, and Carapaz all hitting the top step in recent months.
Despite recent hints that Ineos Grenadiers would revert to a Team Sky-style defensive approach to racing in a bid to return to the top of the Tour after being unseated by Pogačar last summer, Brailsford said that Ineos Grenadiers V.2.0 was here to stay.
“We have changed our race philosophy this season to being more open and aggressive. Our performances have built all season and a joy of racing has infused the whole team,” Brailsford said.
“This more adventurous approach has led us to fearless racing and this is exactly how we will hit the Tour. We will seek out every moment in every stage where the race is on and try to exploit it.”
“The key for us this Tour is our collective strength and camaraderie to the end. Expect the unexpected”