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Chris Froome laughs off alleged rift with Mike Woods

After rumours of internal squabbles, the 4-time Tour de France champ took to social media to clear things up at Israel - Premier Tech

Chris Froome laughs off alleged rift with Mike Woods Photo by: Sirotti

After an article in L’Équipe suggested an internal power struggle at Israel – Premier Tech, Chris Froome posted on X, denying any such thing.

The French newspaper reported that Woods was upset about Froome’s annual salary and demanded his exclusion from Israel-Premier Tech’s Tour de France squad last summer.
Consequently, Froome was left out, and Woods won a stage atop Puy de Dôme in the first week.
Froome dismissed rumours of any squabbles, laughing off the L’Équipe article’s suggestion of any sort of power struggle between him and the Canadian.

Froomey on Woodsy

“That’s news to me. What about you?” Froome posted, tagging his teammate Woods in the post.
Woods was quick to respond, “Haha, same here buddy!”

The Ottawa native’s last race was the Giro d’Italia, where he was forced to abandon earlier after a crash. Woods suffered a concussion in a crash on Stage 5 and did not start the next day. He was not originally slated to race in the Tour de France, and is aiming to make the Olympic team for the road race in Paris. He was currently slated to ride the Vuelta a España.

The last dance at the Tour de France?

Froome is currently riding the Critérium du Dauphiné, a race he has won three times. The traditional lead-up race could result in the Brit riding his first Tour de France since 2022.

L’Équipe suggests that it is a fait accompli that Froome will ride the Grand Tour–although given the reactions of the said rift being debunked, who knows.

The four-time Tour de France champion has struggled to regain his previous fitness after a horrible crash in 2019. He rode in 2021 and 2022, with his best result a third on Alpe d’Huez in his last go at the Tour.

ROI for Chris Froome

Israel-Premier Tech team owner, Sylvan Adams has been critical of Froome saying he has not delivered the expected return on investment since joining the team in 2020.

“How could we say we had value for money?” Adams said in an interview with cyclingweekly.com. “We signed Chris to be the leader of our Tour de France team. He’s not even here, so that cannot be considered value for money. But Chris isn’t a symbol. He isn’t a PR tool. So no, I couldn’t say he’s value for money, no.”

After his non-selection to the Tour in 2023, Froome said he was bummed. “I’m obviously disappointed with the decision. The Tour de France holds an incredibly special place in my heart,” he said. “Physically I was ready. But unfortunately I was unable to show my full ability at the races assigned to me due to equipment issues. I respect the team’s decision and will take some time before refocusing on objectives later in the season and returning to the Tour de France in 2024.”

The Tour de France begins June 29 in Florence. You can watch it on FloBikes.com