"On paper, riders from the Tour should be at a bit of a disadvantage, but Remco can always prove me wrong" - Sven Vanthourenhout on Evenepoel's Olympic hopes

In 2024, Remco Evenepoel is expected to finally make his hotly-anticipated Tour de France debut. How this will play into his hopes of taking Olympic gold next summer remains to be seen though.

Unlike in Tokyo in 2021, at the Paris Olympic Games next summer, the individual time-trial will take place before the men's elite road race. Given that Evenepoel is the current time-trial world champion, the Belgian will start as one of the favourites for gold but with the race against the clock quickly following the Tour de France, a big question is will he still be at top level?

“Past experience tells me that riders who came from a Grand Tour often did well in the road race at the World Cup or the Olympic Games and then fell one percent short in the time trial," analyses Belgian national coach, Sven Vanthourenhout in conversation with Wielerflits. "Just look at Wout van Aert in Tokyo (then after the Tour) and Evenepoel in Wollongong (after the Vuelta). That opportunity also exists here.”

Despite this recent history, Evenepoel is still very much in with a shout. “Remco always comes from a Grand Tour at a very high level. He knows very well what he is doing and I am the last to question his preparation," Vanthourenhout concludes. "On paper, riders from the Tour should be at a bit of a disadvantage for the time trial, but Remco can always prove me wrong and can combine the two perfectly.”

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