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Israel Start-Up Nation have confirmed that Chris Froome will ride the 2021 Tour de France. The 36-year-old will return to the greatest cycling race in the world after two years of absence. The four-time winner of the Tour will support Michael Woods as his captain.

In a team press release, Froome said: “After two years away from the Tour de France, I can’t wait to get back. It has been an arduous journey since my crash at the Critérium du Dauphiné in 2019, but this has been one of my biggest motivations.

“I’ve been working tirelessly to get where I am, and although my ambitions this year won’t be as a leader, I hope to add my experience and support to the team as best I can as road captain. We have a strong contender in Michael Woods, and I look forward to giving my all for him and the team in the battle to Paris.”

Froome’s best results in 2021 have been two 47th places in general classifications at the Dauphiné and UAE Tour. At the Tour of Alps, he was notably featured in one stage’s breakaway. What the Briton may currently lack in form, he will surely make up in experience.

Chris Froome
At the 2021 Volta a Catalunya. © Profimedia

The team’s sports manager Rik Verbrugghe said: “As a four-time winner of the Tour, the value of his experience cannot be underestimated. It will be extremely useful for the team during the race. On a performance level, I believe that we see another improvement from the Dauphiné to the Tour after our recent training camp in the Alps. We hope to see Chris progress stage by stage throughout the race.”

Should Froome’s condition further improve during the Tour, he might be given the leadership role at the Vuelta. We’d surely love to see that. Wouldn’t you?