Chris Froome says that applying for a TUE to get medication for an infection he had at the Tour de France would have left him open to more aggression

Chris Froome has revealed that he refused to apply for a Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) for medication at the Tour de France, despite suffering from illness.

The Brit suffered from an infection in the final week of the race in July but still secured the yellow jersey nevertheless. Froome was on the receiving end of hostility during the race after members of the French media questioned whether his performances have been clean.

As such, the two-time Tour winner was unwilling to risk further scrutiny and criticism by applying for strong medication to combat his illness.

“After everything we had been through in this year’s Tour, especially the hostility from different people along the way, it just felt that if we go down this route, we are opening the door for a whole new wave of criticism and aggression. It would have been within the rules, but I didn’t want it to be the Tour de France that was won because he took this medication in the last week,” Froome told the Sunday Times.

Watch the best bits of the 2015 Tour de France

Froome reportedly even resorted to holding his breath when riding near his rivals in an attempt to stifle his coughs.

“[I] woke up all congested, blocked up, sore throat and I could feel it getting down into my chest, sort of tightening it. I was put on a short course of antibiotics but it had no effect. I was trying to hold it in, so my rivals wouldn’t hear me coughing and wheezing . . . the most difficult times were on the start line where I had [Nairo] Quintana on one side, Contador on the other,” Froome explained.

“I would be standing there with a burning sensation to cough or needing to get some phlegm up, but I would hold my breath to stop myself. I didn’t want them to see I was battling with this. Just don’t let them see anything. I couldn’t wait for the neutral zone so I could get to the side of the road, blow my nose and get it all up.”

Team Sky and Froome came under intense scrutiny for their use of TUEs during the 2014 season, when it was claimed that the UCI fast tracked an application from the Brit at the Tour de Romandie when he was also suffering from an infection.

Brian Cookson promised the UCI would strengthen its TUE procedures after the incident, although he confirmed that nothing untoward occurred.

  • ummm…

    I’d say he is still the most dominant athlete to compete ONLY in the TDF.

  • Namothy

    Lance is still the most dominant athlete to have ever competed in the TDF.

  • Namothy

    I love the French. I don’t like the hostile Anglophobic French cycling fans.

    What made you think I don;t like the French? I never said “I don;t like the French”. I implied that I find it to be a positive that a man abused by French people get upset when he wins.

    I also didn’t say I was watching the Tour De France (btw it finished a little while ago).

    You infer things in a strange way.

  • Jorge

    I’m curious, If you don’t like the french, why are you watching the tour de france?

  • ummm…
  • Brendan Power

    Perhaps I was watching a different race, but I thought he DID win with the fans being mean to him.

  • ummm…

    So did Lance Armstrong

  • ummm…

    every day there is some BS coming out of SKY. They are a bit whiny; he can’t win because the fans are mean to him (apparently Contador and the like can be overcome by MARGINAL gains, but not a fan); now they play the victim over this TUE stuff. He was unfit to race, tough luck. He got away with it in the past – this time he didn’t dare to. That is positive. So I say whatever to the BS.

  • Namothy

    He wins. He fucking wins and pisses off the French. Two very positive things.

  • Andrew Bairsto

    I and I think a lot of people are fed up with Froome whinging does he do nothing else.

  • David Bassett

    Please explain “whatever”

  • ummm…