The relationship between Julian Alaphilippe and the Soudal Quick-Step team, which has a contract until the end of 2024, has been shaky for two years. And at the beginning of the new year there is no improvement in sight, quite the contrary. During the presentation of the team in Calpe (Spain) on Tuesday, January 9, in which Julian Alaphilippe was not present, managing director Patrick Lefévère Explains what the French cyclist should not have done “A priori” will not be at the start of the next Tour de France (June 29-July 21). Education The Belgian will aim for a good place He will be on the Grande Boucle roads for the first time with general classification leader Remco Evenepoel. “See Julian (in team role) “I serve 100% Remco Evenepoel, I don’t like it”commented Patrick Lefévère.
Step aside? Not according to Julian Alaphilippe, who spoke in an interview this Wednesday. Set. “Not going to the tour is not a disappointment, it is a choice approved by the team for me.”, the runner advances. The Frenchman, who wore the yellow jersey of the Tour in 2019, 2020 and 2021, makes one want to change the usual racing calendar. A strategy that prevented him from qualifying for the Tour de France. “I prepared my program and it was approved, so we have a team dedicated to victories (steps) Another one who played the general in the Giro and the Tour »he insists.
“Impulsive runner, not always smart”
Therefore, Julian Alaphilippe must participate in the Tour of Italy between 4 and 26 May. This decision was confirmed by Patrick Lefévère, who scolded the Frenchman in passing. “I think Giro fits the impulsive style of runner that people love, even if he’s not always smart.”The Belgian coach announced this.
This is not the first time Lefévère has had harsh words for the native of Saint-Amand-Montrond (Cher). Leaving the Tour de France without one of France’s most popular French cyclists is a strong choice on Quick-Step’s part. “A disgruntled driver is useless in the team. He had the opportunity to leave. I like drivers who respond to the pedal and he will do that.”replied Patrick Léfèvre, when asked about the Frenchman’s reaction to not being selected for the Tour de France.
“Missing the tour is always special but I’m happy with my goals. It’s a very full season. You have to make choices and stick to them.”Julian Alaphilippe explains in his columns: Set.
The 31-year-old runner steps in when asked if his contract at Soudal-Quick Step will be extended. In April 2021, after his first world championship, he signed a contract for another three years. However, the French pilot’s recent average seasons did not satisfy the Flemish leader. “I have to be realistic: It consumes a lot of my budget and I still want results.”In April 2023, RMC launched the podcast “Grand Plateau”.
Julian Alaphilippe is currently in Australia, where he will take part in the Tour Down Under, the opening race of the season, from 16-21 January. While he likely won’t be able to qualify for the Tour de France, the Frenchman still hopes to compete at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.