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Out the windows, Sky’s fleet of vehicles occupied the car park. Across town near Alicante, American WorldTour team Cannondale-Drapac cannot find money to continue into 2018.
“It is in some ways ‘unfair’ the support we have in general at Team Sky compared to some teams, but if you take some of that away then what do you have teams striving for?” Froome said.
“Why do you try to work harder to get bigger sponsors and more backing to win more races? If you take that away then we are almost becoming communist. Aren’t we?
“Everyone should be riding the same bikes everyone should have the same equipment sponsors everyone should eat the same rice and porridge every morning so no one has added fuel for the stage. Where do you draw the line?”
Bike company Cannondale is leaving the team at the end of 2017. General manager Jonathan Vaughters says he lacks seven million euro to continue the team.
Talks with a new sponsor, sources say Unibet, fell through at the last minute. Vaughters on Saturday night said that he was freeing all of his riders, including Rigoberto Urán, of their contractual obligations so that they could find work.
The nine riders at the Vuelta a España responded by riding on the front and setting up Canadian Michael Woods to try for the stage nine win on Sunday.
Froome rode free, but Woods held on for third place at Cumbre del Sol.
“I do think it’s a huge shame that Cannondale is in trouble for next year. Certainly, the way that they rode yesterday… I haven’t seen Cannondale ride like that in ages and I think they can take a lot away from that,” Froome said.
“They committed their faith in Woods for the stage win. OK, he didn’t win but he came third and I was an amazing performance.
“Still the team was on the front all day and we are still talking about it today. I’d like to see more of that racing from them.”