Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas have been left out of Team Ineos’ squad for the Tour de France.
Four-time Tour de France winner Froome’s place in the squad was in doubt after a lack of form, including at the Criterium du Dauphine earlier this month where he finished 71st.
Thomas, who became the first Welshman to win the event in 2018, is another notable absentee, with the team opting to select last year’s winner Egan Bernal for their leadership and give 2019 Giro d’Italia champion Richard Carapaz his debut.
Froome, who missed last year’s Tour de France due to serious injuries sustained while training for the Criterium du Dauphine last June, was bidding to join all-time greats Bernard Hinault, Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx and Miguel Indurain as a five-time champion of cycling’s most prestigious race.
“Chris is a legend of our sport, a true champion who has demonstrated incredible grit and determination to come back from his crash last year,” said Ineos team boss Sir Dave Brailsford.
“We want to support him to compete for another Grand Tour title and the Vuelta gives him that little bit more time to continue his progress to the top level.”
Froome, who will join Israel Start-Up Nation for next season as sole team leader, will focus his attention on the Vuelta a Espana, to be held from October 20 to November 8, while Thomas will ride at the Giro d’Italia, which begins on October 3.
The eight-man Team Ineos squad for the Tour de France also includes Britain’s Luke Rowe, part of five consecutive victories dating back to 2015, along with Andrey Amador, Jonathan Castroviejo, Michal Kwiatkowski, Pavel Sivakov and Dylan van Baarle.
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