| 15.2°C Dublin

Froome determined to reclaim Tour next year


Team Sky rider Chris Froome.  Picture: Martin Rickett/PA Wire.

Team Sky rider Chris Froome. Picture: Martin Rickett/PA Wire.

Team Sky rider Chris Froome. Picture: Martin Rickett/PA Wire.

CHRIS FROOME is already looking to reclaim the Tour de France yellow jersey in 2015 after his title defence ended with a fractured wrist and hand before the race hit the high mountains.

The 29-year-old Team Sky leader won the 2013 edition and was favourite for July's race, but three crashes in two days ended his participation.

Unlike Tinkoff-Saxo, which responded to leader Alberto Contador's exit by winning three stages and the King of the Mountains title, Team Sky struggled after Froome's departure, with understudy Richie Porte floundering after inheriting the leadership.

Froome is sure to be leader of the squad once more when the 102nd Tour begins in Utrecht, with the full route to be revealed in October. He said: "It's just one of those things. I'm just going to have to suck it up now and move on.

"It's been quite refreshing to come in now knowing I'm not going in as defending Tour de France champion again.


"I can probably fly under the radar a little bit more now. It will definitely spur me on to be absolutely ready for next year's edition."

Team Sky have had to move on, too, after near-flawless Tours in 2012 - when Bradley Wiggins became the first British winner - and in 2013 when Froome triumphed.

Team Sky principal Dave Brailsford has spoken of the need for the squad to continually assess how they approach the race.

Froome, who will now ride the Vuelta a Espana, which begins in Jerez on August 23, agrees. "I think we have been really fortunate at Sky for the last two years having things to go our way and I think it's easy to get lulled into that false sense of security of almost how easy it is at the time, but it's a huge ask winning something like the Tour de France.

"I don't think we can ever go there and think that, 'okay we've got this one in the bag'. It's just never the case.

"It's not necessarily a bad thing what happened this year. In a way it's been a good readjustment for us and to re-evaluate things and to look at how better to improve."