Miguel Angel Lopez: Nobody would like to see a Tour de France without Colombians
Jun 05 2020 06:56 am CET

Miguel Angel Lopez: Nobody would like to see a Tour de France without Colombians
Miguel Angel Lopez: Nobody would like to see a Tour de France without Colombians
Photo of Miguel Angel Lopez by Astana Pro Team

Astana's Miguel Angel Lopez has the plan of continuing the season with the Tour de France as his main objective but among fears of travelling due to the coronavirus restrictions.

In a virtual press conference, the Colombian talked about his preparation to face La Grande Boucle and he is even brushing up certain aspects that he is aiming to improve. "I have started to focus more on the time trial, I've been training much more on the TT bike, taking it more seriously," the rider commented.

"I started training on the road little by little and this week I've been increasing the hours and the intensity of the training. Anyway, I plan to continue doing it calmly because the idea is not to arrive to the race overloaded."

The current calendar has been on hold due to the Covid-19 pandemic and this is will bring a new scenario that can bring surprises in races like the Tour de France, Lopez believes. "In the years before it was possible to know the shape of the rivals and the number of days they were riding before the races and analyse them, but this year everything will be very different because there won't be many races before the main objective that is the Tour," the Colombian explained.

"It will be a game of waiting to see in the race how everything goes. But I think it will be very surprising for everybody because nobody will be able to know beforehand if the rivals are in good or bad shape. So we will have to be prepared and at the end mainly focus on our own preparation because that will be what's important at the race."

Astana, just like many other teams, is suffering economically due to the stop in the calendar but the rider has felt the support of the formation. "I'm always in contact with the team and in these difficult moments I've felt very much their support and in these moments it is vital to feel that from them, because they are like my second family," Lopez mentioned.

Although it is still uncertain what will happen with the World Championships, the Colombian believes that his country has good chances. "It will all depend on the conditions in which I finish the Tour de France and the conditions of the Championships, because I've heard a rumour that it could be somewhere else. But if it is in Switzerland, all the Colombians will have great chances again," Lopez explained.

"And if it is in Qatar, we also have great chances because in Colombia we have good riders for all the disciplines. We have some of the best sprinters and climbers in the world so it will be a very good opportunity for Colombia."

Despite the preparations, the doubt remains about the trip back to Europe, because a flight hasn't been confirmed and the Colombian government announced the grounding of all flights until at least the end of August. "The Colombian Federation has asked all of the riders about their situation to arrange a special flight that works for everybody to return to Europe and I've heard that it will be in mid-July.

"I think the idea is that all the Colombians can travel because I don't think anybody would like to see a Tour de France without Colombians, it would be a very strange race without us. I have the faith that we can travel, that we won't encounter any problems and that in my case I would have enough time to be at least in the Criterium du Dauphine."



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