Orica-Scott: Esteban Chaves, Simon Yates to share leadership at Tour de France
Jun 23 2017 07:00 pm CET

Orica-Scott: Esteban Chaves, Simon Yates to share leadership at Tour de France

Australian WorldTour team Orica-Scott has unveiled its final line-up for the upcoming Tour de France. As expected, Simon Yates and Esteban Chaves will share the leadership.

The team's original plans for the season had Chaves face the Tour as its sole leader but the Colombian's knee injury, from which he recently returned, inspired Orica-Scott to divide the pressure between him and Simon Yates.

"Nothing has changed all year with our focus," said sport director Matt White. "We've had an interrupted program with Esteban's knee injury and also a little with Simon following the change after Romandie but we are still going to the Tour de France fully supporting the pair for general classification rides.

"For Simon, we'd like to challenge for the white jersey and if we can beat the likes of Louis Meintjes (UAE Team Emirates) and Emanuel Buchmann (Bora-Hansgrohe) in that competition, it also makes a top ten result viable.

"Realistically, we don't know what will happen with Esteban. He's podiumed twice before at Grand Tours but it's his first Tour de France. Everything has gone well since the injury. As we have said before we don't know how the lack of racing will impact his Tour de France, but regardless it will be a great experience and it will set him up for the rest of the season."

White feels that the other seven selected riders should be able to support their two leaders on all terrains. "We have a very versatile team and in terms of depth for what we are trying to achieve at this year's Tour, it's as good as we have got.

"There will be the opportunity to go for stages but the main objective is to support our leaders. This year's route bucks the recent trends of race organisers. It's been a long time since we have had nine or ten opportunities for pure sprinters and there isn't many chances at all for the opportunists."

Experience will likely not be an issue for Orica-Scott as Mathew Hayman will function as the team's road captain on flat terrain and Roman Kreuziger will do so in the mountains.

The full line-up:

Michael Albasini (ITA)
Esteban Chaves (COL)
Luke Durbridge (AUS)
Mathew Hayman (AUS)
Damien Howson (AUS)
Daryl Impey (RSA)
Jens Keukeleire (BEL)
Roman Kreuziger (CZE)
Simon Yates (GBR)
Photo of the Orica-Scott jersey (cropped) by Orica-SCOTT



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