Chris Froome says he is puzzled that UCI president Brian Cookson thinks he would start his season as early as the Tour Down Under

Chris Froome wonders why people think he would start his season with the Tour Down Under, having not raced there for six years.

The Team Sky leader lands in Adelaide on Monday, the day after the Australian race finishes, causing UCI president Brian Cookson to wonder why Froome didn’t ride the race.

Froome will start his season at the Sun Herald Tour in February after a block of training with Sky coach Tim Kerrison in Australia.

Since racing the Tour Down Under in 2010, Froome has not started his season in January, preferring instead to wait until early February before pinning on a race number.

“It’s an odd decision by Team Sky I have to say,” Cookson said of Froome’s absence from the race, despite coming to Australia.

“It’s not a helpful decision but one understands why these teams sometimes make these decisions. Performance criteria will always overrule other criteria in certain teams and certain cases. It’s a long season and riders need to prepare in the best way, but certainly that was a puzzling decision to me.”

  • J1

    Yeah, Sky need Cookson’s advice on race preparation, they’ve never won a Grand Tour before. Froome would be burnt out by the time the Tour/Olympics came around.

  • The Awakening

    RE: ““It’s an odd decision by Team Sky I have to say,” Cookson said of Froome’s absence from the race, despite coming to Australia.”

    Why did Brian Cookson HAVE TO SAY, that he thought it was an odd decision?
    Just what compelled Brian Cookson to make that comment?
    Was Brian Cookson ordered to make that comment?
    Strange situation for Brian Cookson…

  • James Barlow

    If the Tour Down Under wants more big names (Grand Tour Mountain goats) then it needs to incorporate the Alpine region. Maybe start it Adelaide and work their way up to Sidney, Via Grampians, Ballarat, Mlebourne, Alpine region.

  • Roger

    TDU is a World Tour ride, right? Cookson pissed CF didn’t ride it.

  • Crydda

    Good fun, perhaps, but why would anyone expect Froome, Contador or any other of the true climbers and grand tour contenders to contest this race – it only has two little climbs of any note.

  • G3K762

    “Pile of pants”? Is that a UK term? The trends change, but funny is still funny 😉

  • Dabber

    Agreed. None of Cookson’s business. He isn’t the guy who is going to win or lose on the back of whatever training/preparation decisions he makes. Cookson has no knowledge of what will be the best for him. He isn’t riding for Cookson’s benefit.

  • ajg72

    It’s a long season, especially when you factor in the additional Olympic goals. Apparently, Chris Froome knows what he is doing. Not so sure about Cookson!

  • Mike Fitch

    Does B.C. expect C.F. to race every race going, And not let his Team Mates not get a ride all Season?

  • Mick Cook

    Cookson should mind his own business and let the Riders get on with theirs.

  • Rich Wake

    Still more fun than 2 of the Grand Tours

  • Mike Prytherch

    Cookson needs to start looking at himself, when he became head of the UCI he started of brilliantly, he now seems to becoming institutionalise and falling into the bad habits of his predecessors, he should keep out of things that really shouldn’t concern him such as this.

  • dourscot

    Froome’s not riding the Tour Down Under because it’s a pile of pants.

    Everyone knows it – it’s one for the Aussie fans and that’s it.