Romain Bardet to end France's Le Tour drought

France's top cyclist Romain Bardet believes he can become the first French winner of the Tour de France for over 30 years

The last French winner of cycling's greatest stage race was Bernard Hinault more than 30 years ago, as Bardet prepares to challenge Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas of Team Sky.

"We're sick of hearing about it but to be honest it's fair enough," said the AG2R team leader who came second in the 2016 edition and third in 2017.

Bardet said to the press "I'll need a certain set of circumstances to win the Tour de France, at any rate I'll need to suffer no bad luck, there are a string of things that need to happen that I can't necessarily control. There is the strength of my adversaries, their collective strength and our collective strength, my own qualities and the need to produce them on the big day, pulling off one great stage, things panning out in your favour."

"It sounds like a lot, but I believe I can do it because I've always been in the top ten," he stressed "If I can continue my progress and find that grain of genius that allows me to continue to dream further and continue to believe in myself, then everything will gather together for me to go further."

Romain Bardet to end France's Le Tour drought

Bardet found himself at top of the sport by finishing sixth on the Tour in 2014 and he has now finished in the top 10 of the overall standings for five straight years, "I truly love the Tour de France, it was my breakout race, a race in which I've always handled myself whatever the situation, With the high altitude, a high number of mountain stages and even one that runs through the town where I was born and a super tough Alpine finish I simply had to concentrate on the Tour, rather than the Giro."

"The route of this Tour is made for an attack-minded rider who wants to set things alight."

Some critics say Bardet lacks a killer racing instinct and pointout his near-misses such as his second-place finish at the World Championships in September and his third place at Liege-Bastogne-Liege in late April.

Bardet laughs it off, "You need to go close to learn, to have a brush with success before being able to get the big wins. That's how I've been playing it and I'm very close and if I keep at it something will open up. I can now maintain a high, stable level of performance that will allow me to go full-on in 2019 and achieve an even higher level. If I can step up one more level I'll be there."

 
Tag: tourdefrance
 
Oct 05 2019 - NEWS: 2020 Etape du Tour heads to Cote d'Azur for a stage around Nice
Oct 03 2019 - NEWS: First Two Stages of the 2020 Tour de France Revealed
Sep 20 2019 - NEWS: American Greg LeMond To Be Awarded U.S. Congressional Gold Medal
Jul 28 2019 - NEWS: Egan Bernal wins 2019 Tour de France as Caleb Ewan wins final Sprint
Jul 27 2019 - NEWS: Egan Bernal wins the Tour de France as Nibali clinches final mountain stage
Jul 26 2019 - NEWS: Egan Bernal in Yellow as Freak Hailstorm shortens decisive Tour de France stage
Jul 26 2019 - NEWS: Final Mountain Stage Slashed as Torrential Weather causes Landslides
Jul 25 2019 - NEWS: Julian Alaphilippe defends the Yellow Jersey as Egan Bernal attacks
Jul 24 2019 - NEWS: Luke Rowe and Tony Martin disqualified after fight breaks out in the Tour de France
Jul 24 2019 - NEWS: Tour de France enters the Alps with three Mountainous Stages
Jul 24 2019 - NEWS: Matteo Trentin delivers Mitchelton-Scott’s fourth stage victory
Jul 23 2019 - NEWS: Caleb Ewan strikes again as Alaphilippe keeps the Yellow Jersey
Jul 19 2019 - NEWS: Watch: Sagan Strikes Again with One Handed Wheelie, Up Hill, on his Time Trial Bike!
Jul 21 2019 - NEWS: Simon Yates wins stage as Thibaut Pinot attacks his Rivals
Jul 20 2019 - NEWS: Double Delight for French Fans as Pinot wins atop the Col du Tourmalet
Jul 06 2019 - EVENT: 2019 Tour De France
 
Tag: ag2r
 
Jan 24 2019 - NEWS: Romain Bardet to end France's Le Tour drought
Jun 20 2018 - NEWS: AG2R-La Mondiale announces its Tour de France team for leader Romain Bardet
Nov 15 2016 - NEWS: New AG2R La Mondiale Team Members Meet In Vaujany Ski Resort
Oct 14 2016 - NEWS: AG2R La Mondiale Pro Cycling Team Announces Its Partnership With Factor Bikes