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Chris Froome to debut at Coppi e Bartali next week

Four-time Tour de France winner returns to competition following a training injury that delayed his racing calendar.

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Chris Froome will make his 2022 debut for Israel-Premier Tech in the Italian stage race Settimana Internazionale Coppi e Bartali, team officials confirmed Saturday.

The four-time Tour de France winner delayed his start to the season due to a knee injury. Officials said after recent training camps that Froome feels he is ready to line up at the start line again.

“It wasn’t an ideal start to the year, to be dealing with an injury, but I’ve worked hard to get my fitness back on track,” Froome said in a team note. “Fortunately, it was only a minor setback. I’m looking forward to taking on the 2022 season with my first race being Coppi e Bartali. It’s always a great experience to race in Italy and I can’t wait to get out there with my teammates.”

The Italian stage race runs March 22-26. Froome last raced in October at a string of one-day Italian races.

There are no other races on Froome’s calendar, and officials said his race program following Coppi e Bartali will be decided in the coming weeks.