Richie Porte may have had to withdraw from the Giro d'Italia after a series of misfortunes, but he'll be in top condition to help Sky team-mate Chris Froome at the Tour de France in July
“We all face adversity at some point, it’s how you come back that counts!” tweeted Froome after his best friend and team-mate had been forced out of the Italian race through injury on Monday. And that comeback almost certainly means he’ll be helping Froome win a second Tour.
After illness wrecked Porte’s 2014 season, this Giro was billed as his big break. He was in the form of his life after a string of victories in early-season stage races but, just like Sir Bradley Wiggins two seasons before, just about everything went wrong for the Sky rider once he got to Italy.
There was a poor opening team time trial, a two-minute penalty after an illegal wheel change and finally a heavy fall in the rain near the finish of stage 13.
“I’ve had a lot of back luck this week but it was the crash on Friday that has taken its toll,” Porte said.
“The plan for me now is to take some time off the bike, get the medical treatment that I need and reset my goals for the rest of the season and come back fighting. Hopefully I can get myself ready for the Tour team.”
Come July, we could be in for a repeat of Sky’s epic Tour-winning partnership of 2013.
Robert Garbutt is editor of Cycling Weekly magazine