The Dutch Grand Tour star has decided to take a break from professional cycling, announcing the decision to his team during their training camp last month.
Dumoulin, 30, is currently on unpaid leave and has not given any indication of when he might return to the sport, as he wants to consider his future as a professional rider.
But Dumoulin’s team believe the winner of the 2017 Giro d’Italia has the potential to return to the highest level this year, if he chooses.
In an interview with cycling website Wielerflits (opens in new tab), Jumbo-Visma coach Grischa Niermann said: “We now assume that Tom will not participate in the Tour. He needs time and he gets that time. The route to the Tour has already started, but the specific preparation for the Tour de France will start for us at the beginning of May. If Tom returns to training before the time and reaches a good level, he is so talented that through that preparation he can be at the start of the Tour in top form. It wouldn't be fair to exclude him from that. ”
In January, the Dutch WorldTour team made the surprise announcement that Dumoulin would be stepping back from the sport as he had been struggling with the pressure and expectations.
The news came just days after Dumoulin had explained how excited he was to race a cobbled Classics campaign this season, before turning his focus to the Grand Tours.
Dumoulin said at the time: “I’m going to think a lot, take the dog for walks and look for: what do I want as a person with the bike? What do I want with my life?
“The team supports me in this and it feels good. It feels like a backpack has lost 100 kilos. I immediately woke up happy. It feels so good that I finally made the decision to take some time for myself.”
Niermann said the team are not regularly contacting Dumoulin to ask when he will return to training, and added that it would take time for him to increase his training and get back to competition.
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