Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Thomas and Poels Back to Help Froome's Bid for Tour; TOUR DE FRANCE

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Thomas and Poels Back to Help Froome's Bid for Tour; TOUR DE FRANCE

Article excerpt

CHRIS Froome's attempt to win a third Tour de France title in four years will be backed by a powerhouse Team Sky lineup next month.

Joining the 31-year-old star on the starting line at Mont St-Michel on July 2 will be three other British riders: Welsh pair Luke Rowe and Geraint Thomas and Englishman Ian Stannard.

Spanish duo Mikel Landa and Mikel Nieve will provide plenty of climbing support, as will Colombian Sergio Henao and Dutchman Wout Poels, with Belarusian time-trial specialist Vasil Kiriyenka picked for his all-round ability.

"The Tour de France will always be the pinnacle of our sport," said Froome, who is aiming to be Britain's first back-toback Tour champion. "I feel in good shape coming into the race this year and am fortunate to have a strong team around me - both on and off the bike.

"Every rider obviously starts every new Tour equal and what has gone before counts for nothing.

This year I am hungrier than ever for success. …

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