Visma DS Zeeman plays down Jonas Vingegaard's chances at Tour de France win: "We have a lot of injuries, so we still have some work to do to sort things out"

Team Visma | Lease a Bike are currently at altitude in Tignes preparing for the Tour de France. Jonas Vingegaard has been there already for several weeks and is looking to improve as much as possible before the start in Florence; but within the team there is the effort to play down his chances ahead of the race.

“The Tour is not like a major time trial where the best rider always wins. So there is also a tactical component to it, and whether you can stay out of trouble. So we are going to take a decision," Merijn Zeeman, head DS of the team, said in the Cycloo Wielercafe podcast. Vingegaard's presence at the race has not yet been confirmed, but all signs point to that being the case soon. Two teams have already announced their lineup for the Tour.

Vingegaard suffered harsh injuries which kept him at the hospital in the Basque Country for almost two weeks, and ever since it has been a race against time for him to make it to the Tour de France, and also be as competitive as possible in order to have chances of defending his two consecutive titles. “Yes, I said that two weeks after those falls. We have now moved on quite some time and we may still need to refine this," he said regarding the statements in the past over Vingegaard's participation depending on him having winning form.

"It is a very difficult puzzle. We have a lot of injuries, so we still have some work to do to sort things out. Wout Van Aert is already a lot further along, he has already ridden the Tour of Norway, but Jonas has of course been in a tough situation since the Itzulia Basque Country race." The team has had to also replaced Dylan van Baarle and Steven Kruijswijk due to injuries; with Jan Tratnik and Wilco Kelderman looking to be the replacements.

“He is now training. But training is one thing, but whether you can be competitive in the Tour is something else. We are not yet ready to say that he will start if he can get on the podium. But sometime we will take stock: will he go or will he not? How is he doing now? What can we expect?” Definitely the intention for Zeeman is to downplay Vingegaard's chances, in an attempt to put the pressure on UAE Team Emirates.

“It wasn’t just a broken collarbone. We must not forget that it was a crash with a very big impact. There's also the fear of another fall. After the Dauphiné I drove on to Tignes, so I talked to him about it a lot.”

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