Team Sky es­corts Chris Froome to keep Tour de France lead

Cape Breton Post - - SPORTS -

Tour de France leader Chris Froome un­der­stands those who har­bour doubts about his dom­i­nant per­for­mances in a sport long marred by dop­ing. Maybe, he says, it’s time to bring in an in­de­pen­dent spe­cial­ist to test his body and help prove that he’s rid­ing clean.

The 30-year-old Bri­ton cruised through a sec­ond day in the Pyre­nees moun­tains on Wed­nes­day, fin­ish­ing more than five min­utes be­hind Stage 11 win­ner Rafal Ma­jka of Poland but keep­ing his main ri­vals in check.

The bumpy, gru­el­ing ride un­der a hot sun came a day af­ter Froome blew away the pack, prompt­ing new sus­pi­cions about dop­ing. Iron­i­cally, it came as Lance Armstrong — who was stripped of seven con­sec­u­tive Tour ti­tles — was to re­turn to French roads nearby, even though he’s per­sona non grata at the Tour de France.

Armstrong was to take part in char­ity rides Thurs­day and Fri­day to raise money to fight leukemia, tak­ing the same route that Tour riders will cover a day later.

Froome brushed off Armstrong’s visit as a “non-event’’, not­ing that “he’s not on the start line with us.’’

How­ever, Armstrong’s pres­ence is a re­minder that any Tour leader can ex­pect to come un­der at least some sus­pi­cion. To deal with that, Froome is will­ing to take test­ing even fur­ther.

“I’m open-minded to po­ten­tially do­ing some phys­i­o­log­i­cal test­ing at some point af­ter the Tour, or at what­ever point suits,’’ the Bri­ton said. “Ob­vi­ously, there would be some in­ter­est­ing things that come out of it, and maybe as a team we might even learn some­thing from it.’’

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.