Egan Bernal is set to make his first ever appearance at the UCI Road World Championships when he lines up for Colombia in Yorkshire later this month.
The Colombian Cycling Federation announced Bernal would form part of the nation’s squad in Yorkshire, which will also be the 2019 Tour de France winner’s first ever time competing in the UK.
The Colombian team will travel to the UK on September 17, with the Worlds taking place between September 22-29. The South American country will announce all four squads across men’s and women’s road and time trial disciplines after the Vuelta a España ends on Sunday, September 15.
Egan Bernal became the first Colombian to win the Tour de France in July – beating reigning champion and Ineos team-mate Geraint Thomas by 1-11 – and also became the fourth Colombian Grand Tour winner after Luis Herrera won the Vuelta a España in 1987 and Nairo Quintana won the Giro d’Italia in 2014 and the Vuelta in 2016.
A South American has never made the podium, let alone won, the UCI Road World Championships. However, with the rising prominence of Colombia in the professional peloton, they will be expected to take yet another strong outfit to Yorkshire in late September.
In 2018 in Innsbruck, Austria, where Alejandro Valverde (Movistar) beat Romain Bardet (Ag2r La Mondiale) to take the rainbow bands, Colombia took a strong squad.
Valverde’s Movistar team-mate Nairo Quintana co-headlined the team alongside Miguel Ángel López (Astana) and Rigoberto Urán (EF Education First). Sebastian Henao (Ineos), Daniel Martínez (EF Education First) and Winner Anacona (Movistar) also rode in support of the trio of stars.
The course in Yorkshire provides a number of climbs but is likely to be more suited to punchier riders such as Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck – Quick-Step).
Great Britain have announced their longlist for the Worlds, with seven of Bernal’s Ineos team-mates vying for a spot in the six-man squad, including Geraint Thomas.