Team Sky 'confident' Chris Froome will race in Tour de France

Team Sky 'confident' Chris Froome will race in Tour de France

Team Sky 'confident' Chris Froome will race in Tour de France

"Chris will ride the Tour", Froome's wife and representative Michelle Froome told Reuters on Sunday.

Tour de France organisers have excluded four-time victor and defending champion Chris Froome from this year's Tour de France, according to a report in the French newspaper Le Monde.

Froome was probably already expecting a hostile reception in France with an "adverse analytical finding" for asthma drug salbutamol from last year's Vuelta a Espana still hanging over him and Team Sky.

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Sky immediately appealed to the French Olympic Committee, who will meet on Tuesday with a representative of either side and will deliver a binding verdict on Froome's participation on Wednesday. But he is confident of being cleared of doping after an investigation.

Salbutamol is a specified substance rather than a prohibited one, meaning Froome was allowed the chance explain the test result and continue racing in the meantime.

ASO, the organisers of the iconic Tour, refused to comment on the report although AFP has had confirmation of information they backs their view that the defending champion should not be allowed to race.

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Stopping under the VSC costs less time than during active racing and all the leading teams apart from Mercedes took advantage. Ricciardo had already run into his own blistering problems and dropped back, and would retire later with a broken exhaust.

The Brit has been continued to compete despite the ongoing doping case against him and won the Giro D'Italia in May. "We are confident that Chris will be riding the Tour as we know he has done nothing wrong", said a spokesperson.

Last month Hinault, whose 1985 victory represents the last French win in the race, amazingly called for riders to strike during this year's race in protest against Froome's participation.

It has nevertheless left Team Sky insiders fearful of a negative reaction among fans at the race when Froome has been the target of abuse in the past.

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