Dave Brailsford has confirmed that Chris Froome is likely to lead Team Sky at the 2013 Tour de France, with Bradley Wiggins set to focus on the Giro d’Italia.
Froome played second fiddle to Wiggins at the 2012 Tour, finishing second overall behind the Londoner to complete a British one-two, but will get his chance to shine in 2013.
Next year’s Tour de France route is more mountainous than in 2012, when Wiggins won both individual time trials en-route to becoming the first Briton to triumph in the race, and the 32-year-old is to turn his attention to adding the Giro title to his palmares.
“We are just getting back into training now and need to do quite a lot of planning,” said Brailsford.
“But it does look as though the plan going into next year, which has still not completely been signed off, is that the Tour of Italy would be a very good target for Bradley and leave Froomey then to focus on the Tour de France.”
Brailsford is midway through overhauling Team Sky’s backroom staff. Coaches Steven de Jongh and Bobby Julich both left after admitting to doping in the past, while head directeur sportif Sean Yates retired last month. Australian Shaun Stephens has since joined the team as performance coach.
Brailsford has also had three members of staff poached by the Rugby Football Union, including Matt Parker, the head of marginal gains, while psychologist Steve Peters will work with UK Athletics, though he is expected to retain some involvement with cycling.
And while Brailsford admits he is powerless to stop other sports snapping up his staff, it does give new members of the team the chance to bring fresh ideas to the table.
“It’s inevitable, but it means you get fresh people and new ideas,” he said. “Matt Parker and our two performance analysts went off to rugby, but Matt had been there ten years and if you carry on with the same group at some point in time you are going to get myopic.
“So I think bringing in people with new ideas that we listen to is healthy.”