Chris Froome has been surrounded by doubts for a while now and Israel-Premier’s Director being tight-lipped about his performance just increases the speculations ever further. There was a time when Froome was in his absolute prime, the kind of strength and vigor that made him win seven-world titles although that time is long gone now. Rik Verbrugghe, Israel-Premier’s director could not clear the doubts regarding Chris Froome.
The British Cyclist has been struggling and that is putting things lightly, a knee injury has delayed his 2022 debut until March and it could even be longer than that.
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Chris Froome experienced a deadly crash back in 2019, it almost took his life and he was signed in by Israel-Premier since then. Ever since he was in rehabilitation, he was aiming for the sky, making the team believe that he could win them glory and even a fifth Tour De France title.
Although these claims were laid to waste when Chris performed last year, his skills were pushed back and he only seemed like a shadow of his past self. The Briton has been plagued with problems since last year, getting exposed to the parasitic disease bilharzia, and let’s not forget the knee injury that he got at the beginning of this year, which was delayed his season debut to March 2022 or even beyond that.
The knee injury is reportedly from either swimming or running, an effort to rebuild himself through these activities although that effort failed too.
Verbrugghe stated in an interview,
It makes no sense to make plans about his racing program now. First, he has to be 100 percent fit. I hope he can start racing from mid-March.
(Courtesy of Het Nieuwsblad)
Chris Froome is Israel-Premier’s highest-paid rider, but Verbrugghe still can’t answer whether Froome can get back to his previous performance or not. He firmly believes that it is not always about performance, it is also about the brand image.
There is more to such a contract than just the sporting aspect. Chris is a big name. His presence opens doors that would otherwise remain closed. Cycling is also about reputation and prestige. Chris plays a major role in this and is an example for young riders within our team.
Froome publicly discussed his injuries at the team’s presentation in Spain. He has been practicing but not to the full extent and it will be a while till he recovers fully.
I didn’t make it to this camp last year, so I’m really happy to be here and starting training with the guys, but my preparations have definitely been delayed.
I’ll only start racing a bit later as well. I’m happy to be here getting the work in. I’m not feeling pain at the moment but I have to take it steady with a slower progression in the first part of the season.
It is a big question on everyone’s mind if Chris Froome can return to his glory days, and if he recovers from his injuries in time. We wish him a speedy recovery and cannot wait for him to get back to his full extent.
Featured Image Via Instagram/chrisfroome