Richie Porte: ‘Winning the Tour de France is not the only reason Trek signed me’

The Australian Grand Tour contender is hoping for a more relaxed approach at his new team

Richie Porte in his new Trek - Segafredo colours (Photo: Yuzuru SUNADA)
(Image credit: Yuzuru SUNADA)

Richie Porte is aiming to take the focus away from the Tour de France in the 2019 season with his new Trek-Segafredo team.

The Australian Grand Tour hopeful has had another promising start to the year, winning on the Willunga Hill stage of his home race for the sixth time in as many years.

But the 34-year-old said he hopes the pressure will be off with his new team, and that he won’t be judging the season based entirely on the Tour.

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In an interview with Australian newspaper The Examiner, Porte said: “It’s a team I’ve been close to joining a couple of times.

“It really takes the pressure off. With Trek, the Tour’s not the reason why they signed me.

“You go there and have a crash and it’s like the season is looked at as a disaster, but it’s not.

“If you win other races, it’s still a good season.”

Porte certainly has the skills to win a Grand Tour, being both an outstanding climber and a strong time triallist.

But he crashed out of the Tour in 2017 and 2018, both on stage nine.

His best result is fifth on GC in 2016.

Porte told The Examiner the biggest victory of his career was the Tour de Suisse last year, putting it above even Paris-Nice.

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He hopes to repeat that success this year, and said he will “see what happens at the Tour” while hoping to avoid the bad luck.

To recover from his spate of serious injuries, Porte said he has been focusing on pilates to get his mobility back.

He added: “I will probably do at least another four years, that will take me up to 37.

“I’ll just take it while I’m getting offered contracts. It’s not a bad job. It has its moments.”

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Alex is the digital news editor for CyclingWeekly.com. After gaining experience in local newsrooms, national newspapers and in digital journalism, Alex found his calling in cycling, first as a reporter and now as news editor responsible for Cycling Weekly's online news output.

Since pro cycling first captured his heart during the 2010 Tour de France (specifically the Contador-Schleck battle) and joining CW in 2018, Alex has covered three Tours de France, multiple editions of the Tour of Britain, and the World Championships, while both writing and video presenting for Cycling Weekly. He also specialises in fitness writing, often throwing himself into the deep end to help readers improve their own power numbers. 

Away from journalism, Alex is a national level time triallist, avid gamer, and can usually be found buried in an eclectic selection of books.