“That crash could have been career-ending for a lot of people" - Chris Froome admits he's 'lucky' to still be in the peloton

It's no secret that Chris Froome is nowhere the kind of level he had when he was winning seven Grand Tours in seven years between 2011-2018. The Brit isn't getting himself too down about that though, instead opting to focus on how lucky he is to be still in the professional peloton.

“I stop myself from getting disappointed or having a negative mindset from not being able to find my previous condition, because I can remind myself how lucky I am,” the 39-year-old, who is currently riding at the Criterium du Dauphine and aiming to boost his hopes of Tour de France return, in conversation with Velo. “Basically I can still do what I love doing.”

Alongside father time just catching up with him, arguably the biggest reason Froome is no longer at the level where he can compete for wins is the nasty crash he suffered back in 2019 when reconning a Criterium du Dauphine time-trial. The severity of the crash was no joke as Froome somewhat luckily escaped with only multiple broken bones and not a career-ending or life-threatening injury as was first feared.

“Every time I am reminded of that, I am still grateful to be here racing, doing what I love. That crash could have been career-ending for a lot of people," Froome reflects on the terrifying incident as he prepares for another Criterium du Dauphine time-trial on stage 4 of the 2024 edition. “I am really glad to still be doing what I love, and I feel fortunate that I can do that pain-free.”

“Sure, I certainly haven’t reached my previous level where I left off at. But I am incredibly grateful to have had this opportunity," the three-time Criterium du Dauphine winner continues. “I think if I was still continuing having medical problems and still in pain, then I think it would be a very different story. I am pain-free, I am able to work hard, and do my job. That’s motivating for me.”

The big question remains however, will a return to the Tour de France be on the cards later this month? “I am doing everything I can to get myself ready,” Froome concludes defiantly. “I’ve spent a lot of time at altitude, so hopefully that’s put me in good stead. We’ll find out at the end of this week.”

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