• Chris Froome (R), Geraint Thomas (C) and Egan Bernal have mapped out their big 2019 goals. (Getty)Source: Getty
Chris Froome will not defend his Giro d’Italia title this year, choosing to focus on winning a record-equalling fifth Tour de France crown instead, Team Sky announced on Tuesday.
Cycling Central

3 Jan 2019 - 5:29 AM 

Froome won his third straight Grand Tour title with victory at the Giro last May before the champion finished third at the Tour, which was won by team-mate Geraint Thomas.

“It’s been a hard decision to figure out which Grand Tours to focus on, especially having won the Giro last year... but for 2019, my number one objective is going to be the Tour de France,” Froome said in a statement.

“It was definitely a difficult decision not to go back to the Giro and defend the Maglia Rosa. I’ve got amazing memories from last year, but I think, with the Tour as my main objective, it’s probably better that I skip the Giro.”

Thomas confirmed he will also focus on the 6-28 July Tour this year, as well as the time trial World Championships which will be held in Yorkshire.

“The main goal for me will be to go back to the Tour for the best result I can. Maybe if I hadn’t have won the Tour in 2018 I might have looked at a Giro/Vuelta program,” Thomas said.

Sky’s Colombian sensation, Egan Bernal, will lead his first Grand Tour at the Giro d’Italia which begins on 11 May.

The British-based outfit’s owner and sponsor, broadcaster Sky, confirmed last month that it will end involvement in professional cycling after the 2019 season.

Team Sky's era of domination marked by triumph and controversy
There is still a year left for Team Sky to continue with its dominant racing style so we cannot yet write a complete obituary but the announcement sets the scene for a long goodbye to an era which may not be repeated given the uncertainty through to the 2019 Tour de France.
Sky to end involvement in the sport after 2019 season
Broadcaster Sky will end its longstanding sponsorship involvement in cycling after the 2019 season, Team Sky said today.