Romain Bardet says it will be a 'great sign' if Tour de France goes ahead in July

The French rider was hoping to ride the Giro d'Italia, which has since been postponed

Romain Bardet on the attack at the 2020 Paris-Nice stage seven
(Image credit: Getty Images)

French climber Romain Bardet has said that he hopes the 2020 Tour de France does happen, in an interview with L'Equipe, saying it would be a "great sign" if it goes ahead.

The AG2R La Mondiale rider's season has now been turned upside down due to the coronavirus. He was set to ride the Giro d'Italia and then aim for Olympic success in Japan, but both have since been postponed.

But he is keeping his options open and remaining optimistic for a possible Tour in July if France is able to get the virus under control.

Bardet said: “It seems to me that it might be less utopian, if the pandemic has been controlled by then in France, to organise the Tour de France.

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“We're all going through difficult times, but it would be a great sign if the Tour could be held in July. It would mean that the health situation had improved, and that we were on the right track… But it's probably too early to say whether that's possible.”

Winner of last year's king of the mountains jersey after an abysmal start to the Tour, Bardet was going to ride the Giro with the same idea as Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) did in 2018; taking the huge pressure off his shoulders for his home race later in the year.

AG2R's star rider went on to speak about the Olympics year postponement, as it was a key target in his year with the course around Mount Fuji suiting climbers.

Bardet says that the decision was "reasonable and logical" to postpone and that he is now just "thinking beyond sport." as Covid-19 plunges much of the world into lockdown.

"I didn't know how anyone was going to be able to take part in the Olympics while there was still so much uncertainty and the world was in the state it's in," Bardet continued.

"It would be selfish of me to only be concerned by the sporting aspect of everything that's happening."

With the season completely up in the air now, Bardet is now just focusing on normal life away from sport.

He said: “I've lost the thread of my season a little, especially as we don't know when we're going to race again. Everyone's thinking beyond sport now."

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Tim Bonville-Ginn

Hi, I'm one of Cycling Weekly's content writers for the web team responsible for writing stories on racing, tech, updating evergreen pages as well as the weekly email newsletter. Proud Yorkshireman from the UK's answer to Flanders, Calderdale, go check out the cobbled climbs!

I started watching cycling back in 2010, before all the hype around London 2012 and Bradley Wiggins at the Tour de France. In fact, it was Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck's battle in the fog up the Tourmalet on stage 17 of the Tour de France.

It took me a few more years to get into the journalism side of things, but I had a good idea I wanted to get into cycling journalism by the end of year nine at school and started doing voluntary work soon after. This got me a chance to go to the London Six Days, Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Britain to name a few before eventually joining Eurosport's online team while I was at uni, where I studied journalism. Eurosport gave me the opportunity to work at the world championships in Harrogate back in the awful weather.

After various bar jobs, I managed to get my way into Cycling Weekly in late February of 2020 where I mostly write about racing and everything around that as it's what I specialise in but don't be surprised to see my name on other news stories.

When not writing stories for the site, I don't really switch off my cycling side as I watch every race that is televised as well as being a rider myself and a regular user of the game Pro Cycling Manager. Maybe too regular.

My bike is a well used Specialized Tarmac SL4 when out on my local roads back in West Yorkshire as well as in northern Hampshire with the hills and mountains being my preferred terrain.