After confirming his intention to focus his 2023 season on the Tour de France, Romain Bardet told the press that he wanted to take inspiration from Geraint Thomas during the last edition to aim for a good place in the general classification.
Romain Bardet is no longer the same. Absent from the Tour de France in 2022, the native of Brioude had lined up last year following his early retirement from the Giro. But, as announced by his team on Tuesday, the one who finished second in 2016 then third in 2017 intends to make the Grande Boucle the highlight of his season. At a press conference, the Habs admitted that their approach to the race will not be the same because, in their eyes, “the situation has changed a lot”. Drawing a parallel with the years that saw him shine on the Tour, Romain Bardet highlighted a density rarely seen at the highest level.
« I will not say that the Sky formation of 2016 and 2017 was weaker than the current Jumbo-Visma but there is now Jumbo as well as UAE Team Emirates, Ineos Grenadiers etc. “, he confided. To support his point, the 32-year-old runner assured that leaders like Tadej Pogacar, Jonas Vingegaard or Remco Evenepoel no longer necessarily need a top team to make the difference. “When Bradley Wiggins or Chris Froome won the Tour de France, they could count on their team to build on their successes, he added. There are now guys who can run around placing crazy attacks because they are so strong. »
on and off @LeTour 🇫🇷
We’re ready to make a return to the Tour de France and have a focus on GC as a team where @romainbardet will be our spearhead 🏹 #KeepChallenging #TDF2023 pic.twitter.com/pjg8ItZAMi
— Team DSM (@TeamDSM) January 10, 2023
Bardet: “I mainly focus on the process”
In view of the next Tour de France, Romain Bardet claims to have a reference to follow. ” I want to do a Tour de France à la Geraint Thomas said the DSM team leader. While the Welshman took third place last year behind Jonas Vingegaard and Tadej Pogacar, the 2018 vice-world champion assures us that “his performance was brilliant” and that his state of mind was exemplary. “For someone who has already won the Tour de France, to fight fully when the other two attack, when he was dropped each time… He was like the last survivor of the battle, he summarized. It was something very inspiring to see. »
Adding to having seen the rider from the Ineos Grenadiers team be “even better than when he won the Tour”, Romain Bardet sees this as a source of motivation: “ He has shown that at 36 he can reach his best “. Personally, the best climber of the Tour de France 2019 wants to approach the 2023 edition in the same way as the last Giro. ” I’ll try to take it like a normal race and that’s the type of mentality I learned with this team., he assured. I mainly focus on the process, not the consequences that a bad result can have on your life. »
3️⃣ programs, 1️⃣ team 💙
We can’t wait to get our 2023 campaign underway with this lot 🥰 #KeepChallenging pic.twitter.com/sQncZ4jgOB
— Team DSM (@TeamDSM) January 10, 2023
Bardet: “Find another way to save time”
Admitting that his “state of mind has changed a little”, Romain Bardet also realized that he did not necessarily have the capacity to compete with the top of the basket. ” From now on, it is obvious that when I go to participate in a race like the Tour, I will not be the best or among the two, three or four favorites, he confided to the press. This allows me to attack until the end, to raise my level in terms of tactics or training to match the youngsters. “A potential differential that will push him to approach the race in a different way, even if it means surprising him if necessary.
“On paper, I know that I will be beaten during a mountain finish by the candidates for the general classification. So I have to find another way to save time, which is interesting, said the native of Brioude. It will be very difficult to compete with Jonas Vingegaard or Tadej Pogacar but, at the same time, it will be about creating an opportunity. There is this uncertainty. “An outsider role on the next Grande Boucle that Romain Bardet does not refuse, highlighting a complicated route proposed by the organizers.