Geraint Thomas is part of the “open and aggressive” team of the Ineos Grenadiers of the Tour de France – .

Geraint Thomas is part of the “open and aggressive” team of the Ineos Grenadiers of the Tour de France – .

Coverage of the Tour de France will be live on the BBC Sport website

Geraint Thomas will lead Ineos Grenadiers’ candidacy for Tour de France victory in a team that also includes Tao Geoghegan Hart.

Ecuador’s Richard Carapaz will also be a major force in the British squad, which could win the yellow jersey for the eighth time.

“We changed our racing philosophy to be more open and aggressive,” said team boss Sir David Brailsford.

The biggest cycling race starts in Brittany on June 26.

Geoghegan Hart claimed Ineos’ only World Tour victory last year at the Giro d’Italia – after the team lost to Slovenian Tadej Pogacar on the Tour – and is one of three British riders in the eight-man team.

Brailsford added: “We will not win this Tour sitting in the wheels. We have the team to make it a runner’s race, take the initiative, seize every opportunity and focus our opponents on every kilometer of every stage. “

Last year’s race saw one of the most dramatic conclusions in its 108-year history when UAE Team Emirates’ Pogacar overcame a deficit of nearly a minute to beat compatriot Primoz Roglic , by Jumbo-Visma, during the time trial of the penultimate stage.

The two Slovenian riders are the favorites to win the race this year, both posting the best performances of any rider during the season so far.

Ineos won six World Tour races in 2021, including Thomas’ victory in the Tour de Romandie and Carapaz’s victory in the Tour de Suisse last week.

But Pogacar and Roglic came out on top against Ineos’ strongest riders in the stage races, leaving the three-week race perfectly in place.

This will be the 12th Tour of Ineos since their inaugural race in 2010 as Sky Procycling, in which they won seven Tours, led by Bradley Wiggins in 2012, Chris Froome four times in 2013 and 2015-2017, and one by Egan Bernal in 2019 after Thomas’ Victory.

Brailsford added: “Our performances have been built up all season and the joy of racing has infused the whole team. This more adventurous approach has led us to some fearless races and that is exactly how we will approach the Tour.

“We will look for every moment in every stage where the race takes place and try to exploit it. The key for us on this Tour is our collective strength and camaraderie until the end. Expect the unexpected. “

The 21-stage race, which includes testing across the French Alps, will most likely be decided in the Pyrenees in the last week, or during the 31km time trial on the penultimate day in Saint -Emilion.

The race ends with its traditional procession and its sprint finish on the Champs-Elysées in Paris on July 18.

Full squad of Ineos Grenadiers: Geraint Thomas (GB), Richard Carapaz (Ecu), Tao Geoghegan Hart (GB), Jonathan Castroviejo (Spa), Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol), Dylan van Baarle (Ned), Luke Rowe (GB), Richie Porte (Aus)


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