LE PUY-EN-VELAY, France (AP) — Mikel Landa has been so robust over the past two weeks that there is no such thing as a doubt he may very well be a crew chief on the Tour de France.
Regardless of driving in assist of Chris Froome, Landa has been spectacular in mountain levels and was stronger than Froome final week within the Pyrenees when the Staff Sky chief struggled within the ascent to Peyragudes.
When Froome was dropped just a few hundred meters from the end line, Landa determined to chase down rivals, a transfer that raised questions in regards to the Spaniard’s loyalty.
He silenced the critics throughout Sunday’s Stage 15 on the street to Le Puy-en-Velay.
Froome was dropped due to a mechanical downside on his bike forward of the final massive climb of the day. Landa stayed on the entrance when the incident occurred, however he waited for his chief when it grew to become apparent the three-time champion was in a position to come again.
“There may be a whole lot of belief, little doubt, no query,” Staff Sky supervisor Dave Brailsford stated after the stage when requested about Landa’s ambition. “They’re very a lot collectively as a pair driving for the general (crew), not driving in opposition to one another in any method.”
Landa, who’s out of contract on the finish of the season and is reportedly being courted by Staff Sky rival Movistar, stands sixth general — simply 77 seconds behind Froome. He may very well be another answer for Staff Sky subsequent week within the Alps if Froome struggles.
However for now, he stays a “domestique,” in biking lingo a rider working for his crew and chief at the price of private ambition.
“We noticed at the moment that Landa didn’t hesitate, he did the fitting factor, he stayed within the entrance,” Brailsford stated. “And when he knew that Chris was coming, he simply dropped off the pack and picked up him, introduced him to the entrance, and managed. And within the finale he was very supportive of Chris. There are not any points.”
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