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"This is something I really wanted. I wanted not only be in the Tour but also to be an actor in the race, playing for the team, trying to win a stage. I finally managed to reach the necessary level."

Photo: Sirotti








29.06.2015 @ 17:59 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Following the national championships, the sports management of AG2R La Mondiale decided to select Jan Bakelants and Christophe Riblon for the final two spots on the Tour de France roster. A few weeks ago the team announced the first seven riders on the team.


"Jan is an experienced rider, punchy and aggressive. He is able to win the best races. In the Tour, he will work for the team but will also have the opportunity to try his luck.


"Regarding Christophe, we had doubts at the end of the Dauphiné, where he withdrew in a stage. Since he reassured himself at the Route du Sud and reassured us too. We were waiting to see his performance in the French Chaampionships and whether he has ascending form. The race that he did today showed us that this is the case.


"Christophe has a strong history in the Tour and with the team. He is a rider who turned professional with us eleven years ago. He love the jersey and defends our colors with honor. He has brought us a lot. We are happy to see him back to his best. Today, he produced a beautiful race by sacrificing himself in the end. He deserves this selection."


Following a major drop in form which required medical examinations, a decision will be taken about Patrick Gretsch's participation today.



"I am very proud and very happy," Riblon said. "This is something I really wanted. I wanted not only be in the Tour but also to be an actor in the race, playing for the team, trying to win a stage. I finally managed to reach the necessary level. It was a long and hard time. For three weeks I have fought. The low was my withdrawal from the Dauphine. It was a hard knock. I tried to change a lot of things in the nutrition and made big sacrifices to change something in my body. It went well. In these French championships I saw that I could be there for 250km. It is very reassuring for the Tour."



"I am very pleased to participate in the Tour de France for the third time. It is an important race for me because I already had the chance to wear the yellow jersey and win a stage," Bakelants said.


You can read more about the selection of the first seven riders here.


Ag2r-La Mondiale for the Tour de France

Jan Bakelants
Romain Bardet
Mikael Cherel
Ben Gastauer
Patrick Gretsch
Jean-Christophe Péraud
Christophe Riblon
Johan Vansummeren
Alexis Vuillermoz



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