RIDER REACTION: 2019 Tour de FranceSun 28 Jul 2019
As the biggest race of the season came to a close today, we spoke to each of our riders to get their thoughts on the past three-weeks of racing:
"It's been fantastic Tour de France on a few fronts. We've had four stage victories, with three different winners. Every single day we've ticked the boxes as a team, tried to put someone in the break, tried to ride GC, we really put our best foot forward every day we could.
"Obivously GC didnt go to plan, but this is the strength of the team, we re-evaluated and we went again and we own four stages.
"I've been in the Tour de France team six times now and this has by far been my favourite and for me personally, I havent finished on my knees like I normally which is great. After finishing the Giro and then doing the Tour, it's been a long couple of months but we'll enjoy a few beers with family, friends and the team."
"The Tour de France was an amazing experience and to have such a successful team during the three weeks was incredible. There were obviously many ups and down during the race, but I think as a team we can end the Tour de France feeling happy."
"If you'd said three weeks ago that we’d finish up in Paris with four stage wins I think we all would have signed up for that!
"Like any Grand Tour it’s had its ups and downs. In the first half of the race we tried to keep quiet and out of trouble and obviously once our plans changed midway through the Tour the focus was purely on stage wins.
"I think we can be extremely proud with what we’ve achieved here. I for one can say I’ve had great fun with all the guys, on and off the bike like always. Of course we need to thank our staff for making our lives so easy whilst on Tour and to all the fans for encouraging us over the past few weeks."
"Before we started, I said winning a stage was a dream of mine and now to say I achieved my dream in this year's Tour is still something that hasn't quite sunken in yet.
"The team hasn't missed a beat this whole Tour, we have taken every opportunity out of it and with great success. We have had a few years without any victories at the Tour so to come away with four is quite unheard of these days. It has been great to be a part of such a successful team.
"On a special note, our staff are the real heroes behind our success, sure we put it together while we are riding, but they are the backbone to our success here. They are the ones getting less rest than any of us but are expected to smile everyday nonetheless. I am proud of the whole organisation and I am happy to finish my seventh Tour de France with these great memories."
"I don’t think any of us expected the team to win four stages at this year's Tour.
"Despite a few bumps along the way, a disappointing TTT and GC ambitions unraveling then we proved the strength of this team throughout the three weeks.
"When you are successful it’s easy to look good. But where we showed our true colours as a team was the way we quickly bounced back from our upsets.
"We were committed to a plan every day. We won four stages from the breakaway and before each of these stages we set ourselves the goal of getting the right riders in the break to try win the stage.
"Everyone played an important role each time we won a stage and we maintained the same commitment throughout the three weeks. We never lost concentration and we never forgot to have fun and enjoy the biggest race of the year.
"Nothing beats riding for this team."
“It was a fantastic three-weeks. When you come here with a GC hope and the GC hope finishes, it is unfortunate but can happen, it is sport, but straight away we went again on any single day that we could win.
"We were always there, always trying and four stages is not something you have everyday."
"In summary it’s been a successful Tour - four stage wins and everyday we went out there and gave it everything. Some days it worked out and when it didn’t we tried again the following day. When you give 100% you can’t be disappointed and I think we went out there and did all we could.
"For me personally it didn’t go exactly to plan but the guys never lost faith and when we changed focus, they were there to help me jump in the breaks and chase a stage win."
"It was a great Tour - very successful for the team of course. Four stage wins, I dont think we've ever had so much success at the Tour before, not since the guys had the yellow jersey before I was in the team.
"I am very proud to be part of that success. The boys have been really great from start to finish and we will celebrate well tonight in Paris."