David Millar has been controversially omitted from the Garmin-Sharp team that will be built around Andrew Talansky at the Tour de France this year.
The 37-year-old Millar today communicated via Twitter that he would not be in the squad after being told initially that he would line-up at the Grand Depart on home turf in Yorkshire where few British professionals will be.
Defending Tour champion Froome as well as Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) will start the Tour on Saturday as the primary overall protagonists though it was Talansky that surprisingly best the two at the Dauphine earlier this month.
The Dauphine is a good litmus test for the Tour and Talansky secured the yellow jersey there earlier this month on the final stage putting more than a minute into overnight leader Contador. Froome won the race last year before going on to claim his maiden Tour title and Bradley Wiggins did the same before him.
Garmin-Sharp sports director Charly Wegelius said Talansky's victory did not alter the intended Tour team.
“Andrew’s [Dauphine] performance was really just a confirmation of what we knew was his potential and it’s a really big step for him in terms of self-belief and the belief that he can be competitive with that small group of riders,” Wegelius told Cycling Weekly prior to the Tour team announcement.
“But internally the team was always aware of that and Andrew was always in first person more than anybody aware of that so fundamentally it doesn’t actually change the structure of the [Tour] team or the strategy. Andrew was always going to be one of our main priorities. Although it’s a really welcome and positive thing so close to a race like that, it doesn’t change the structure of the team very much.”
The 25-year-old Talansky spearheads the youthful Tour squad that also includes Tom-Jelte Slagter, Alex Howes, Ben King, Sebastian Langeveld, Ramunas Navardauskas, former Paris-Roubaix champion Johan Vansummeren, Janier Acevedo and Jack Bauer. Sprinter and Tour regular Tyler Farrar is also an omission.
“Andrew’s overall race is going to be a big priority and then on the side of that we’ve got Tom-Jelte Slagter. His profile as a rider suits a lot of stages in the Tour de France so he’s the next tier after that,” Wegelius said.
“The rest of the team that we’ve put together is what we hope is a mix of experienced riders able to manage certain situations on the road, riders who can get over climbs and riders who can ride on the flat. I think every single one of the riders we picked could win a stage in the Tour de France in their own right.
“I think it’s a good, balanced team that’s perfectly capable of obtaining the objectives that we’ve set.”
Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Sophie Smith is an Australian journalist, television reporter and presenter, who has provided coverage for Cycling Weekly from races across the world. She has covered eight Tours de France, as well as reporting for national and international newspapers as well as other magazines.
Follow Sophie Smith on Twitter and Instagram:
New York City saw three e-bike battery fires in the past 24 hours
Lithium-ion battery fires continue to wreak havoc on New York City as three fires spark in the past 24 hours alone, pushing the total of such fires past 200.
By Anne-Marije Rook • Published
Quoc Chelsea Boots review - a promising idea, sadly not great either on or off the bike
Like a sofa-bed, the Quoc Chelsea Boots are neither entirely comfortable nor functional
By Myles Warwood • Published
Stefan Bissegger powers to time trial victory and overall lead on stage three of UAE Tour
Swiss rouleur beats world time trial champion Filippo Ganna by seven seconds
By Adam Becket • Published
5.30am alarms, hot and dirty metalworking, 'uncle' Jan Ullrich and lofty expectations: meet EF Education-EasyPost's Georg Steinhauser and his fascinating backstory
One of the peloton's busiest riders is also the WorldTour's ninth youngest
By Chris Marshall-Bell • Published
'I love just applying myself fully to something that requires all of you': Lachlan Morton is set to ride 1,000km mountain bike race