'Chris Froome won't remain one of the greats without the Giro d'Italia on his palmarès'

Giro director Mauro Vegni says he is working to bring the four-time Tour de France winner to the race

Chris Froome at the 2017 Tour de France (Sunada)
(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

The Giro d'Italia organiser wants to have Chris Froome (Team Sky) start the 2018 edition and try to complete a unprecedented Grand Tour triple.

Froome just won the Vuelta a España in Madrid in September after taking his fourth Tour de France title in July.

>>> Could Chris Froome win the Giro d’Italia in the same year as the Tour de France and Vuelta a España?

"I think Chris is at the right maturity to try to win the Giro," organisational director Mauro Vegni told the Marca newspaper when presenting the opening stages in Jerusalem on Monday.

"I don't think he'll remain one of the greats without this big one in his palmarès."

Froome only competed in the Italian Grand Tour twice early in his career. Since he started competing for Grand Tour wins, he focused solely on the Tour with the Vuelta afterwards.

"We are working to make it happen and we really think that this is a unique opportunity for him to dispute it," Vegni said.

Vegni and RCS Sport presented the first three stages of the race yesterday. For the first time, a Grand Tour will start outside of Europe with the Giro's stages in Israel. The 2018 edition begins with a 10.1-kilometre time trial in Jerusalem.

"I don't think we have to change the route to convince him. We never designed a route thinking about a rider," said Vegni. "In addition, as he himself commented in a presentation of the Tour, if it was the route, perhaps it would have been better to race the previous Giro that had more time trial kilometers than the Tour."

Never has a rider won all three Grand Tours in one season or in a 12-month period. Froome could become the first, but first he would have to race.

Froome also has an eye on equalling the greats – including Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Jacques Anquetil – by winning five Tours.

"It's too early to say, I need to talk with the team, but it could be an option," Froome said after winning the Tour in July when asked about racing the Giro in 2018.

Like Vegni, he considers himself mature enough to manage three-week races perfectly. "I'm definitely getting older, but at the same time, each year, I like to think I'm developing and becoming more of a complete rider. I hope that I am still improving as a rider."

Any decision from the Froome and Team Sky camp would likely come after the organisers release the complete routes of the Giro and Tour later this autumn.

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