"Egan Bernal is improving with every race... Tom Pidcock slightly disappointing" - Philippa York assesses INEOS Grenadiers ahead of Tour de France

So often one of the main protagonists of Tour de France season, the INEOS Grenadiers look set for another year of being dark horses and background players in 2024. After a mixed Tour de Suisse, the team can still hope of some Tour de France success however.

"Egan Bernal is improving with every race and with his Tour de Suisse results, he becomes a valuable asset for INEOS again," assesses former polka dot jersey winner and two-time Tour de France stage winner, Philippa York in her post-Tour de Suisse analysis for Cycling News. In the end, Bernal just missed out on the final podium, losing 3rd spot to Mattias Skjelmose in the final time-trial.

In the end though, despite this final stage disappointment, Bernal can be more than happy with his results of late according to York. Just in time for the Tour de France as well. "I don’t think he can ask for equal status with Carlos Rodríguez at the Tour just yet," she warns however. "But he’s way better than the start of the season and he’ll have gained confidence from the way he was able to be present again at a high-level stage race."

On the other side of the coin, the man the INEOS Grenadiers hope will be the answer to their search for a new Grand Tour leader, Tom Pidcock had a slightly more difficult Tour de Suisse. "Tom Pidcock, on the other hand, was slightly disappointing. Even though he finished the race 6th on GC, there was that last bit of form missing that would have enabled him to challenge for the overall title," York says of the multi-discipline British star. "His time trial ability is still there, but outside of that type of effort he looked to be at his limit. It’s all relative though and, in this context, his reputation isn’t in his favour. We expect brilliance from Pidcock all the time, but coming down from altitude maybe this is all part of the plan."

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