While he wants to be particularly ambitious for this new season, Julian Alaphilippe will make the Tour de France one of his priorities. But the Quick Step runner is aware of the limits of his team.
But for Julian Alaphilippe, the essential is necessarily elsewhere. And if he will be keen to shine on the Italian classics at the start of the season, the Strade Bianche and Milan San Remo in the lead, the native of Saint-Amand-Montrond has already clearly defined his priorities with, in mind, the Flandrian classics and the Tour de France.
We will not have a team to play the general classification
Asked on Tuesday, on the eve of his return to the Majorca Grand Prix, Julian Alaphilippe nevertheless warned that his way of running would not change on the Tour de France. While he has in the past said that he ultimately intended to aim for the general classification, the double world champion will still mainly aim for stage victories. And this while in 2024, Remco Evenepoel should be the maximus leader of the Quick Step on the Tour, with the objective of becoming the first Belgian to register his name on the winners of the event since Lucien van Impe in 1976.
2023 could therefore be the last opportunity for Julian Alaphilippe to play in the general classification, at least with the Quick Step jersey. “I’m not thinking about the general classification, he nevertheless assured. In any case, we won’t have a team at the start of the Tour de France to play it, that’s for sure. But of course, the Tour de France will be a very important race like every year for the team, but also for me after having missed it last season. After the Flandrian Classics, my biggest goal will be to do a good Tour de France. With a lot of steps that I will recognize. A great motivation to find the roads of the Tour, as every year. »
And given the very rugged profile of the first stages through the Basque Country, Julian Alaphilippe should have the opportunity to shine.