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“For the Tour, I personally think he’ll be in good condition, and he’s certainly convinced he’ll be in good condition, so that’s why he’s on the list,”

Photo: Sirotti








21.06.2014 @ 12:50 Posted by Joseph Doherty

Chris Horner looks almost guaranteed to race the Tour de France after recovering from a crash that ruled him out of the Giro d’Italia. Horner is part of an 11 shortlist for the Lampre-Merida team that will be led by world champion Rui Costa.


“For the Tour, I personally think he’ll be in good condition, and he’s certainly convinced he’ll be in good condition, so that’s why he’s on the list,” Brent Copeland (Lampre manager) told VeloNews by telephone Friday. “We have 11 riders, so that means we have to take two riders off, but the idea now is go to the Tour with Rui Costa and Chris as the GC leaders, and Sacha Modolo for the sprints.”


Horner returned to racing at the Tour of Slovenia, which amazed Copeland as he returned so soon from the horrific accident.


“It’s a big surprise he’s back and ready to race the Tour,” Copeland said. “From the very first day of his crash, he said he’d be ready for the Tour. I didn’t believe it, but he did. It’s incredible to see how fast he’s recovered. The sacrifice and dedication he puts into training is incredible. His stretching, diet, training, it’s impressive to see. He’s an example to the younger riders.”


However, before the Tour of Slovenia he only had 17 race days to his name but this lack of racing means he will have no pressure on him to perform. Horner will support Costa in the mountains and will be a second option if things go wrong.


“By the first real mountain climb, then we’ll know where everyone stands on GC. The race will work itself out,” Copeland continued. “The most important step is to get through that first week in England and over the cobbles, then we can start concentrating on the tactics and goals of each rider. The perfect scenario would be to have both Rui and Chris up in the GC going into the second half of the Tour.”


Copeland spoke about the severity of Horner’s injuries and how lucky he is to be alive considering he wasn’t wearing a helmet.


“Luckily, there was no concussion, but there were a lot of cuts to his head. The biggest problem was the collapsed lung and broken ribs,” Copeland said. “We were considering putting him at the Tour de Suisse, but the doctors said there was a risk of crashing on broken bones, which is obviously a lot worse, so the medical staff suggested another week for the ribs to fully heal, so that’s why he’s at Slovenia.”


Lampre-Merida for Tour de France (two will not go)


Rui Costa (POR)

Chris Horner (USA)

José Serpa (COL)

Kristijan Durasek (CRO)

Rafael Valls (ESP)
Nelson Oliviera (POR)

Matteo Bono (ITA)
Filippo Pozzato (ITA)

Sacha Modolo (ITA)

Maximiliano Richeze (ARG)
Davide Cimolai (ITA)




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