Tour de France

Froome faces fire and fury

2018-07-22 05:59
Chris Froome
Chris Froome (AP)

Johanneburg - This year’s Tour de France, one of the biggest annual sporting events in the world, might end up being called the Tour de Violence.

If the team presentation on Thursday evening was anything to go by, current Tour de France champion Chris Froome is going to need an armed escort for the entire 3 329km of the cycling race.

Froome, who has lived under a cloud for the past nine months while an adverse analytical finding on his asthma medication was under review, was loudly booed and jeered when Team Sky took to the podium in Vendeé during the team presentations.

The British cyclist was cleared of any wrongdoing earlier in the week, but the vocal and passionate fandom of the grandest of the Grand Tours was clearly having none of it.

Jonathan Vaughters, the manager of the Education First team of last year’s Tour de France runner-up, Rigoberto Urán, has voiced his concerns at the threats being directed towards Froome.

“If I were Team Sky, I would be concerned. Reading comments on social media from people saying: ‘Since justice wasn’t served, we’ll serve it from the side of the road.’ That’s basically an outright threat,” he said.

Armed police officers are patrolling team hotels and have been a presence at the Team Sky and Education First hotels.

Froome is aiming to win the Tour de France for the fifth time, hot on the heels of his Vuelta a España and Giro d’Italia wins.

The 21-stage Tour de France offers an exciting mix of challenges, including everything from a return of the Alpe d’Huez to the rumble strips of the Paris-Roubaix cobbles, plus a 65km road stage in the Pyrènèes with, for the first time in its history, a gridded start.

Try to catch tomorrow’s team time trial in Cholet – it is 35km of intense cycling.

Riders to watch:

Peter Sagan, who is one of the funniest men on two wheels, and he can race.

South Africa’s Daryl Impey, Reinardt Janse van Rensburg and Jay Thomson. – City Press correspondent

Read more on:    tdf 2018  |  chris froome  |  cycling


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining



What do you enjoy most about the Tour de France?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2019/20 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.