Chris Froome: “Towards the end of the Vuelta I had had nine offers”
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Friday, September 16, 2011

Chris Froome: “Towards the end of the Vuelta I had had nine offers”

by Xylon van Eyck at 5:05 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling, Interviews, Vuelta a España
 
Tour of Spain runner-up explains his reasons for staying put at Team Sky

Chris FroomeAs announced earlier today, Chris Froome has opted to stay with Team Sky after his superb Vuelta, signing a new three year deal with the British outfit that will see him ride there through 2014. Thanks to his recent second place finish in the Spanish Grand Tour, Froome had generated great interest from a host of other teams.

Earlier today revealed to VeloNation that the number was one more than had previously been suggested by his agent. “Towards the end of the Vuelta, I had had nine offers on the table,” he disclosed.

On September eighth his agent Alex Carera listed the squads chasing Froome at the time. He said that Garmin-Cervelo, Saxo Bank, Ag2r, Skil Shimano, Movistar, Lampre, Astana and Sky were all interested.

Despite that demand, the Kenyan-born rider has ultimately decided to stay put with his current team. He is currently in his second year with Sky, joining the team at its inception after turning professional with the South African sponsored Barloworld team in 2008.

He explained the reasoning behind his decision to stay where he is. “We have now worked together for the previous two years and I believe the team has come to understand me as a person and a rider, in the same way I have come to understand the way the team works,” he told VeloNation.

“It's easy to just look at someone's cycling CV and previous performances but to really work well with any athlete, it is important to have a real understanding of his or her life as a whole. I believe at Sky they now have that kind of relationship with me.”

Though the 26 year old has had some steady results in the past, none have been as great as achieved in the Vuelta recently. One of the reasons for this, he says, is the work he has been doing with former professional Bobby Julich.

Julich, who finished third in the 1998 Tour de France, moved to Team Sky this year after several seasons with the Saxo Bank setup, and is mainly looking after some of the younger riders. Froome confirmed that their collaboration will be an ongoing one. “Yes, I will continue with Bobby,” he said. “He has been a fantastic mentor for me this year and I respect where he has come from.

“He knows what it's like to be on the edge of the saddle in a cross wind at 60kmh praying the guy in front of you doesn't sit up leaving you with a gap to close. I think he can relate to what I go through on a daily basis and the challenges we are constantly having to overcome as cyclists.”

Froome’s recent achievements in the final Grand Tour of the year will not be the last success story of the season, he hopes. He was today announced as part of the Great Britain team for the world championships, and is motivated to perform there. The squad is hoping to steer Mark Cavendish to a rainbow jersey in Copenhagen on September 25th.

“I will be going to the world championships next week to ride support for Cav,” he said, thinking ahead to what could be the biggest British success of the year, if all goes to plan. “Then I will end my season at the Tour of Beijing, before heading home to South Africa for the off-season.”

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