• Egan Bernal and Ineos Grenadiers manager Dave Brailsford (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
Ineos Grenadiers team manager Dave Brailsford has already turned his attention to 2021 after their slump in production at this year’s Tour de France.
By
SBS Cycling Central

16 Sep 2020 - 12:05 PM 

Brailsford has overseen seven Tour titles in the last eight years but raised eyebrows when 2018 winner Geraint Thomas and four-time champion Chris Froome were not selected for the race.

And after team leader Egan Bernal fell further behind in his defence of the French title, Brailsford said they will now look to use the final week as a chance to “do a few things we wouldn’t normally risk doing”.

'I'm f**ked up on all sides', says Bernal
Defending Tour de France champion Egan Bernal admits he’s in a lot of pain after falling further behind in a demanding Stage 16.

“When we had the rest day and took stock of the situation, there was nobody looking in the mirror more than us,” Brailsford said, as quoted by Cyclingnews.

“It’s a bit of a test of pride, passion and character now, to come from this for the rest of the week.

“But as far as we are concerned, this is the first day of trying to win the Tour de France next year.”

As for Thomas’ omission, Brailsford pointed to the Brit’s insufficient race condition, before turning his attention to Froome’s continued recovery.

Thomas reacts to INEOS' Tour failure in light of his omission
Just one thing was the focus of post-race questions put to Geraint Thomas after the final stage of Tirreno-Adriatico and that was how he felt about Egan Bernal cracking on the Colombier in light of his own omission from INEOS' Tour team and his second place overall at the Italian stage race.

“I’d never judge myself on somebody else’s narrative to be honest,” Brailsford said.

“It was a good decision, regardless of what anybody else may think, and Chris is where Chris is at.

“He’s just not ready for this level of competition and I think he knows that himself.

“He’s doing a fantastic job of getting back to where he needs to be but on both of those fronts (Thomas and Froome), we will go back and see what we can learn.

SBS ŠKODA Tour Tracker - The place to watch the Tour de France in full
The 2020 Tour de France on SBS will be covered from the start in sunny Nice to the sunset on the Champs-Élysées, with exclusive live start to finish coverage of every stage through the SBS ŠKODA Tour Tracker.
How to watch the 2020 Tour de France LIVE on SBS
The mountains are calling - escape to France with us. Don't miss a single minute of the 2020 Tour de France as SBS brings you every moment LIVE, FREE and EXCLUSIVE via SBS, SBS VICELAND and streaming online via SBS On Demand and the SBS ŠKODA Tour Tracker App.

“People are entitled to their opinions, but I didn’t gamble with the selection.

“They were big decisions. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t.

“I’m sure that people have a lot to say but they’re not privy to the facts that I’ve got.”

The 2020 Tour de France continues with the brutal 170km stage from Grenoble to Méribel (Col de La Loze) - the highest point of this year's Tour. Stage 17 begins via SBS On Demand and the SBS ŠKODA Tour Tracker from 8:05pm (AEST) on Wednesday, with the television broadcast set to start at 9:35pm on SBS.