Tour de France 2022 – Back on the Tour, Romain Bardet (Team DSM) has “child’s eyes”

Tour de France 2022 - Back on the Tour, Romain Bardet (Team DSM) has "child's eyes"

Fate sometimes… Tour 2020, on the evening of the 12th stage, Romain Bardet is 4th at 30 seconds from the yellow jersey. He gives up the next day after the 13th. Giro 2021, on the 12th day of racing, the same Bardet is 4th overall, 14 seconds from the pink overcoat. He retired the next day, during the 13th stage. These two times, the Auvergnat was aiming for a good, even a very good general classification. This will not be the case on this Grande Boucle 2022 which leaves from Copenhagen where the Tour is welcomed as it should be. For his reunion with the biggest race in the world, Bardet wants to have fun “without thinking about tomorrow“.

Having turned professional in 2012 with Ag2r, Romain Bardet had not participated in the Tour that year. It was only a postponement for 2013 which was to be the start of a series of eight consecutive participations. Often the best Frenchman overall (from 2015 to 2018 with two podiums in the process), he was inhabited by the Tour de France, without being able to get rid of it. It was necessary to go into exile abroad, to DSM, to see differently and something else. It was the Tour of Italy in 2021 and 2022 before returning for the high mass in July.

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Copenhagen, departure city of the Tour and world capital of cycling

I needed this year of hindsight to appreciate even more the greatness of the Tour

It’s true that I missed it last year to be honest. I am very happy“, smiles the one who has, like the others, “had a great presentation“Teams on Wednesday night in the lavish Tivoli Gardens.”What did I miss? We realize that this is the major event of the year“, continues a Bardet who says he is concentrating on the stages. If at the Giro, his form allowed him to dream very big, he is not there at the very beginning of summer. touched at the Giro and six weeks without competition since.

The moment when Bardet saw his dreams fly away

To grasp our attachment to certain things, losing them sometimes seems like the ideal recipe. Far from the Tour, in front of his television, Bardet understood how much he loved this race, its course, its atmosphere, its specificity: “I think I needed that year of hindsight to appreciate the greatness of it even more. It did me good, I was able to refocus on other things and I can approach this new participation with even more desire and especially with the eyes of a child..”

A first in France with DSM

This Tour will be an event for him. In eighteen months with DSM, he raced a lot in Italy, a little in Spain, in the Emirates, in Belgium but never in France. The proof that he deeply wanted to see something else. “It’s really to be very pleasant to be there. It will be my first race in France with the team, it’s good that it finally happens. Here we don’t put the Tour at the center of my season so I take it as a bit of a bonus. I hope to enjoy it as much as possible.”

To enjoy it, Romain Bardet has the recipe. As in the Giro d’Italia, he will also work for the others, “sprinters, classic runners“, before thinking of him. His turn will come in the mountains. Maybe in Alpe d’Huez where he loves the atmosphere but more certainly in Granon, a pass he says he prefers to the climb with 21 switchbacks, A question of difficulty, no doubt. A stage success, that’s what seems to motivate the leader of the DSM. Unless the first week goes off without a hitch and he finds himself in the game for the general standings. So, maybe be, old habits will soon return.

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