Because I am horrible at time management and a few other things, let me just quickly get the discussion started on what is likely to be the only thing going on this week, with pretty much no top-end racing on the calendar: who gets to go to the Tour de France.
Let’s look round for some announcements coming out in the last 24 hours.
Tour de France— Équipe Cycliste Groupama-FDJ (@GroupamaFDJ) June 25, 2018
└ 105e édition
└ Compo d'équipe
└ Le Gac
└ Vichot pic.twitter.com/EOMmLDQHi6
The headliner is Arnaud Démare, who will hunt for stages and is gaining form after the Tour de Suisse. David Gaudu is a young climber who won’t likely put on any special jerseys in his inaugural Tour, but having come second to teammate Thibaut Pinot in last year’s Tour de l’Ain should give French fans plenty of incentive to start piling their considerable hopes on his future success. [Oh look!]Which always works out great.
Here’s another Twitterized announcement, Team Movistar:
The roster you've been waiting for: here's our lineup for the 105th edition of @letour! / El equipo que estabais esperando: ¡estos son los ocho Movistar Team que disputarán el #TDF2018! #RodamosJuntos pic.twitter.com/wnb5sNJols— Movistar Team (@Movistar_Team) June 25, 2018
Spoiler time: Nairo made the cut. So too did Landa, Valverde, and less obviously, Amador, Bennati, Erviti, Rojas and Soler. Rojas and Benna can do a bit of stage-hunting, and Benna is one of those steady captains of the road nowadays, particularly when it comes to the cobbled stage early on, one we are led to believe (not without reason) could sink this entire team in the blink of an eye. Erviti can help there too. Amador and Soler should be excellent domestiques, along with whichever of the top three tosses away four minutes in the first week.
Mitchelton-Scott is the only other team whose Tour selection I am seeing at the moment, though I suspect a couple others have been announced. Here ya go:
PREVIEW: “In what has been an incredibly successful season for the team already, we are really excited by the strength & potential of the 8 riders we’ve selected for this year’s @LeTour."— Mitchelton-SCOTT (@MitcheltonSCOTT) June 21, 2018
Our #TDF2018 team is in! Read more: https://t.co/Oy6ByK8KHV pic.twitter.com/caim7QCn16
The Gr8ful 8 are: captain Adam Yates, Jack Bauer, Luke Durbridge, Mat Hayman, Michael Hepburn, Damien Howson, Daryl Impey, and Mikel Nieve. Caleb Ewan was left home, so unless Impey throws himself into the odd sprint here and there, this will be a very GC-focused team.
Feel free to add more in comments!