The Sky leader was asked if he was concerned that Sunday’s short but difficult high mountain stage to Sierra Nevada could see a repeat of the mass attack in the Pyrenees last year, where Sky were caught out at the start of the stage.
“I’m not afraid of a Formigal situation repeating itself,” Froome insisted. “I’m here with a very different team this year, and we’re in the leader’s jersey which is different to Formigal, too. I find it difficult to imagine that kind of situation arising again.”
“But having said that, we’re ready, and guys like [Alberto] Contador (Trek Segafredo) will surely be on the attack from early on.”
Froome was taking no chances on Friday’s stage finish into Tomares, on paper a relatively flat finale and one for the sprinters. However, the reality was different, and riders were faced with a technical run-in and a short, sharp ascent in the last kilometer. As stage winner Matteo Trentin (Quick-Step Floors) pointed out, “it wasn’t a finish for sprinters at all, it was one for puncheurs.”
“Today [Friday] my objective was to stay in front, not to gain time on the splits, and Gianni Moscon helped me get in a very good position in the final,” Froome said after finishing the stage in seventh. “Then I told Gianni to go for it, he was well-placed and he did very well.”
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