The Tour de Romandie was not too kind to Chris Froome. In the past years, Froome started fairly well but this year when he crossed the finish line, he finished 38th. But, luckily, Team Sky principal Sir Dave Brailsford is not worried one bit. These late struggles seem to be a part of a master plan for longer and sustained success further down the road.
To say that Froome has a “full plate” is an understatement. He has eyes towards the Tour de France, the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, and Vuelta a Espana later this year. But, Froome remains focused and easy going, even taking time to ride with local riders near the University of Southampton this past weekend.
He received much needed confidence from Brailsford.
“In that sense, I would say the trajectory is on track and mentally, he is as strong as anybody, so I think it’s all looking good.”
Sir Dave pointed towards a few pluses in his last performance despite coming in 38th. Regarding losing 17 minutes in the first stage and recovering to win on a summit finish a couple days later, he stated.
“That stage win gave him a lot of confidence, to bounce back like he did. Every now and then with Chris you see moments of real grit, and that is what we saw that day.”
The Vuelta seemed like a stretch for Froome, but decided it was possible when he saw a favourable climber-friendly route.
Things are looking good for Sky already this season, and they have already enjoyed significant success. Most notable was Ian Stanndard’s third place on the Paris-Roubaix.
“It’s long overdue for a team like ours. We should have won a Monument by now, in all honesty. Having won grand tours, to have a Monument on our Palmarès now is very satisfying.”
But time will tell how Chris Froome fares in the challenges to come. If he continues to struggle, Sir Dave Brailsford could be singing a slightly different tune.