Wout van Aert fears first-week Tour yellow jersey ambition 'no longer realistic' after appendicitis setback

The Belgian says the time he was forced to spend off the bike was equivalent to an off-season

Wout van Aert
(Image credit: Getty)

Wout van Aert says his goal of taking the yellow jersey in the first week of this summer's Tour de France is "no longer realistic" after having his appendix removed three weeks ago.

The Belgian had been targeting the maillot jaune of the French Grand Tour, with the first week providing sprint stages affording bonus seconds as well as a time trial that should suit the Jumbo-Visma rider, but has had to "start from scratch" after surgery.

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Hi. I'm Cycling Weekly's Weekend Editor. I like writing offbeat features and eating too much bread when working out on the road at bike races.

Before joining Cycling Weekly I worked at The Tab and I've also written for Vice, Time Out, and worked freelance for The Telegraph (I know, but I needed the money at the time so let me live).

I also worked for ITV Cycling between 2011-2018 on their Tour de France and Vuelta a España coverage. Sometimes I'd be helping the producers make the programme and other times I'd be getting the lunches. Just in case you were wondering - Phil Liggett and Paul Sherwen had the same ham sandwich every day, it was great.