Chris Froome says he ‘doesn’t feel close to retiring’ as he targets a fifth Tour de France title.
The Team Ineos leader said winning a record-matching Tour is a ‘huge motivation’ as he looks to join an elite club alongside the likes of Eddy Merckx and Bernard Hinault.
Only four riders in history have won five Tours, with Froome poised to match that after missing out to team-mate Geraint Thomas last year.
Froome told BBC Sport: “I definitely don’t feel as if I’m close to retiring. I’d like to keep trying for the next few years to win as many Tours as I can.
“It’s not getting any easier – the level is getting harder and harder every year.
“But I’m in an amazing position where I can go for number five, and I know I have the backing of the best team in the world to try to do that.”
Froome is looking to join the select few with five wins in the French Grand Tour – Eddy Merckx, Jacques Anquetil, Bernard Hinault and Miguel Indurain.
The 33-year-old won his first Tour in 2013, following up with victories in 2015, 2016 and 2017.
After also winning the 2017 Vuelta a España, he returned to the Giro d’Italia last season for only the third time in his career.
He took the overall in Italy with a huge solo attack on the penultimate mountain stage, making him the first Brit to win all three Grand Tours.
Froome’s attention then switched back to the Tour de France last summer, but the demands of winning the Giro took their toll as he was forced to settle for third place as Geraint Thomas took a maiden Grand Tour victory.
Both Froome and Thomas return to the Tour this year riding under the British WorldTour outfit’s new name, Team Ineos.