Egan Bernal has indicated he would like to race both the Tour de France and Giro d’Italia in 2020, as the 2019 Tour champion looks to add to his Grand Tour victories at the age of just 22.
“What I would like to do would be to race the Giro and then go to the Tour,” when Bernal is asked by Spanish newspaper AS about his plans for next season. “I am super excited about the possibility of riding the Giro. It is a very beautiful race and I lived in Italy for two years.
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“Doing both races is very complicated, but if we make that decision we could do it well, although I know it is almost impossible [to win both]. Even so, I am a very open person to go to either Giro, Tour or Vuelta, in the end there are three very important races,” Bernal said.
If he rides the Giro it would be Bernal’s first ever Italian Grand Tour appearance, having won the Tour on only his second ever inclusion and also never having taking on the Vuelta a España.
Having proven himself at such a young age, Bernal’s ambition is now limitless and says that this has taken the pressure off rather than piling it on.
“Obviously I will try to win another Tour, a Giro or a Vuelta, but whatever happens I have already won a Tour and nobody can take that away from me.
“It is not that I am relaxing, but I think I have already done something very good and now I should not have any pressure.”
Ineos will have to balance the desires of four Grand Tour winners next year, as Chris Froome returns from injury and new signing Richard Carapaz arrives from Movistar to compete for top billing at the biggest races alongside Bernal and Geraint Thomas.
So far so good, according to Bernal, with all potential leaders seemingly content and buying into the idea of doing what’s best for the team as a whole.
“With the team it is easy to agree on a racing calendar because they take into account the opinion of the rider. They will never take you to a race you don’t want to go to, but on the other hand, we must take into account the opinion of the other riders.
“We all have to reach an ideal schedule in which we feel comfortable and comfortable with the careers and roles we have to do. But there is a lot of communication and so far there has been no problem because with Chris and Geraint it is very easy to talk.”
Jonathan Castroviejo recently said that other teams are starting to bridge the gap to Ineos, who have dominated the Tour de France over the past decade, as the likes of UAE Team Emirates and Bahrain-Merida increase their budgets.
But both Castroviejo and Bernal see Jumbo-Visma, who had a strong 2019, winning the Vuelta a España with Primož Roglič, as their main rivals next season.
“It is a team that has been growing in recent years,” Bernal said. “We will have to take into account what he did this 2019, and already for the following year I think they will take another step forward with the arrival of Tom Dumoulin.
“It is very good when there are these types of squads, it is not cool when we are in the races because they are more closely fought, but for people it is more fun when there is not only one team that dominates.”