Tadej Pogacar, Primoz Roglicithe French, the Covid… Bernard Hinault took stock of the 109th edition of the Tour de France on the occasion of the second day of rest, this Monday. With his usual outspokenness, thee five-time winner of the Big loop (1978, 1979, 1981, 1982, 1985) returned to many subjects before delivering his prognosis for the final podium. “For me, there is Pogacar at the very top, and after that, the other two, I don’t know. The only way to beat him is to attack him. He is the one who currently has the keys. He showed it with his different numbers, he’s having fun“, he explained at the microphone of Cyclism’News.
Video – Bernard Hinault is the sponsor of the Tour de l’Avenir
“The Tour de l’Avenir is great!”
But before tackling the news of the Roundthe “Badger” was also present for the presentation of the route of the 58th edition of the Future Tower (August 18-28), an event of which he is the official sponsor. “My role is a role of communication with the personalities who welcome us, such as the mayors. We discuss everything, cycling… And then every day, I have three guests with me in the car. I try to make them share a great moment“. The course will extend from La Roche-Sur-Yonin Vendée, untilx Alps. “It’s a nice course. The runners will have something to express themselves at all levels. Sprinters and backpackers can have fun up to the foot of the Alps, before giving way to climbers“, he says.
The potential future winner of the Tour de France will he take part? “Maybe ! We have already had a few, between Bernal, Quintana – very present even if he did not win the Tour – and of course Pogacar today. The term “Tour de l’Avenir” says it all: young people under 23, with many nationalities… It’s great! Because we see and discover runners we don’t know, and we say to ourselves “Where does this one come from?”. And then we find them among the professionals“.
Following today’s press conference in Morzine as part of the rest day of the @Round find the profiles of the 2022 edition of the Tour de l’Avenir which will start on August 18 from @larochesuryonfr and will end on August 28 in Villaroger. pic.twitter.com/BB2h9L0gHr
— Tower of the Future (@tourdelavenir) July 11, 2022
“We don’t want to see the riders leave just because of some junk in the peloton”
While the Covid was at the center of all concerns for this rest day, all the runners ultimately tested negative. “I’m relieved, like everyone else. We don’t want to see the riders disappear one after the other just because of some crap that’s lying around in the peloton. Now, just because there aren’t any today doesn’t mean there won’t be any tomorrow. That’s the problem with the Covid: we can be sure of the results immediately, but three days later you may as well be contaminated“, tempers Bernard Hinault.
“INEOS, if they want to go 3-4-5… That’s fine, they keep it up”
Great favorite to his own succession, Tadej Pogacar (UAE Team Emirates) impresses but has yet to crush the Round with its 39″ lead over Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma). “He still has control over it. Already, from the prologue, he is third. I think he took risks, he really wanted to be present. At the Planche des Belles Filles, he didn’t make a gift, he is really there. And again in Lausanne (Saturday), he is fighting to take some bonuses… He may not have knocked out the Tour yet, but the question is above all “Who is there in front from him ?”. The problem is here today for me“.
“Jumbo-Visma has Vingegaard and Roglic. Roglic is already at 2’30”, he has to attack from afar and not be afraid. It’s the only way to put Pogacar in difficulty. It’s the same for INEOS, with three runners. If they want to make 3-4-5, fine, let them continue like that. But if they want to knock him off his pedestal, there are no 36 solutions. You have to get him by attacking him each in turn. To win the Tour, you have to know how to lose it. It’s the only solution for them. And for Pogacar, his only way to avoid being attacked from all sides is to attack him. -even, and bring them to their knees to finish“, explains the former champion at the height of his 67 years.
“The French must dare! By winning on July 14 in the Alpes d’Huez, we will remember it for life”
The French are well placed overall, with Gaudu and Bardet 5th and 6th respectively. Is this a good sign? “For me, 5th or 6th is already not interesting. Wanting to fight specifically to stay in the top five, they may very well take a splinter. Better to try and go for steps, I believe that would be just as good. By winning on July 14 at Alpe d’Huez, we will remember it for life. It’s better than a top 10. Nobody knows who was 10th last year, so it’s much more important to win stages“.
Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ) tried it on Sunday, without success. “When we listen to him, he didn’t dare to follow and waited for 2’30”. Such a gap, you have to close it. Alone, it’s not easy. We see that he works good. But he lacked those 30″ to get Jungels. It’s like that. You have to dare at the risk of losing everything. Of course there was still the valley and 62 kilometers… But he made other Pinot. There, i dont know. If I were his sporting director, I would have told him to go straight ahead and not wait. As soon as you have the possibility to go there, you have to do it.“, advances a Bernard Hinault visibly a bit annoyed by the attitude of the French riders. “No it doesn’t bother me, it’s their problem, not mine“, he concludes.