Egan Bernal (Ineos Grenadiers) has said that he is planning to return to the Tour de France in 2022.
The 24-year-old Colombian, who won the overall Tour title in 2019, told Revista Mundo Ciclistico that he has his sights set on the French Grand Tour again next year after targeting – and winning – the Giro d’Italia in 2021.
“It is clear that we are going to focus all our preparation and efforts thinking about competing in the Tour de France this year,” Bernal said. “It is time to return to return to the path that we found in 2019 and from which we have separated a little.”
Bernal became Colombia’s first ever Tour de France champion in 2019, but back issues derailed his 2020 campaign, and he abandoned that year’s Tour. He shifted his focus to the Giro this season and took an emphatic overall victory there.
“It is a beautiful and fantastic memory,” he said of the Giro win. “It had enormous personal and sporting significance for me, for my team and for our country it was something very cool. It had a very high cost in both individual and collective physical and mental effort but it is a triumph that we will not forget.”
Bernal went on to race the Vuelta this season, finishing sixth there.
The Ineos Grenadiers have yet to say anything about whether he will indeed be on the start line in Copenhagen in July of 2022, but Bernal is looking at the French Grand Tour with renewed interest and, apparently, a much improved back. As he told Revista Mundo Ciclistico, “I think I have fully recovered, but nevertheless we have been monitoring the evolution through physiotherapy sessions, strengthening with gym attendance, hoping to start the cycling year and continue without anything that could affect performance on the bike.”