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by Shane Stokes
January 9, 2018
ASO announces wildcard teams for Tour de France and other events; Dumoulin believes aiming for Giro and Tour might be possible; Tour de l’Avenir winner Bernal psyched to start Team Sky phase of career; Team Sky line-up announced for Santos Tour Down Under; Almost three years after quitting anti-doping group, Bardiani-CSF rejoins MPCC; MPCC says Bardiani’s acceptance is on a probationary basis; Video: Katusha announces Santos Tour Down Under line-up; Video: 7 News blast pro rider’s ‘stunt’
Although history suggests pulling off a win in both the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France is next to impossible – Marco Pantani was the last to do it, 20 years ago – Tom Dumoulin has said that he believes it is possible to shine in both events.
“That is indeed an option for me next summer,” he told Telesport, talking about targeting both races. His view is based in part on Mikel Landa’s example; he crashed in the Giro and lost his chance of going for GC, but finished strongly by taking a stage plus the King of the Mountains title. He then went on to be a late pick for the Tour de France, riding impressively there to net fourth overall.
“I have indeed noticed his approach,” Dumoulin said. “I think it is not impossible to combine those two races. Certainly because there is a week extra this year due to the [football] World Cup. That offers more opportunities.
“In my view, many riders in the past have made the mistake by targeting both the Giro and the Tour from the start of the season,” he continued. “As a result, they were probably already in the Giro thinking about the classification in the Tour. That’s a mindset that doesn’t work.”
Dumoulin said that he believes it is necessary to fully focus on the Giro and then, afterwards, think further. “Then there are four possibilities: the Tour for the general classification, the Tour as a stage hunter, the Vuelta as a helper for Wilco Kelderman or no other Grand Tour.” He has already committed to trying to win a second consecutive Giro d’Italia, and said that the final decision would be made after this year’s race.