Ag2r to decide in coming days about John Gadret’s Tour de France participation
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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Ag2r to decide in coming days about John Gadret’s Tour de France participation

by Shane Stokes at 9:58 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Tour de France, National Championships
 
Team emphases importance of national championships, will enter 20 riders in French road race

John GadretFollowing John Gadret’s career-best result of fourth overall in the Giro d’Italia, he and his Ag2r La Mondiale team are poised to decide whether or not he will ride the Tour de France.

Gadret was one of the strongest riders in the recent Giro, winning stage eleven to Castelfidardo and ending the race three minutes and eight seconds off third place. He indicated during the race that he was unlikely to ride the Tour, but since then has appeared more open to the possibility.

Speaking to VeloNation this week, his Ag2r La Mondiale team has said that a decision will be made in the next few days. Gadret wanted time to think, and also to allow himself to recover from what is perceived to have been one of the hardest Grand Tours in recent years.

Meanwhile the team has said that it is determined to try to take national championship jerseys where possible, stressing the benefits of having riders in standout kit.

“A national champion’s jersey doesn’t have points towards the UCI classification but it’s always a pleasure to wear a distinctive jersey,” general manager Vincent Lavenu told VeloNation. “Firstly, there is a recognition from the public towards a rider which is very much appreciated. This recognition also benefits the team and the the media impact of a distinctive jersey is important.”

Because of that, his team plans a big campaign for the French nationals. Five riders will compete in the time trial on Thursday, namely Dimitri Champion, Yuriy Krivtsov, Romain Lemarchand, Jean-Christophe Peraud and Christophe Riblon.

This quintet will join up with 15 others for next Sunday’s road race. The extra riders are Julien Berard, Guillaume Bonnafond, Maxime Bouet, Mikael Cherel, Cyril Dessel, Hubert Dupont, John Gadret, Sébastien Hinault, Steve Houanard, Blel Kadri, Julien Loubet, Sébastien Minard, Lloyd Mondory, Mathieu Perget and Anthony Ravard.

The team will also hope for success in other national championships, with riders such as Nicolas Roche (Ireland) and Martin Elmiger (Switzerland) heading back for their races. Roche won the road race title in 2009 and finished second last year, while Elmiger was national champion in 2001, 2005 and 2010.

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