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Froome to leave INEOS?

Old 05-16-20, 02:47 AM
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Froome to leave INEOS?

This seems to be the rumour at the moment, Froome out of contract end of 2020 so rumours he may sign elsewhere. Unlikely I'd say and hope. He's always been Brailsfords #1 and seemingly favourite rider. I guess in pro cycling like everything else money is the ultimate master but personally I hope he stays with INEOS. If he did go to another team his chances of a 5th TDF significantly reduced as can't see any team competing with them for GC honours.
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Old 05-16-20, 03:10 AM
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The problem is Ineos has continued Sky's pattern of committing to winning at all costs, but not necessarily committing to a designated leader.
Froome probably won't be in peak form this year anyway, so in a sense he could benefit from the delayed grand tour races. Meanwhile, Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal are better bets.

Assuming a TdF happens this year, if Froome doesn't podium he loses some clout in looking for a new team that's well organized enough to provide the support he'd need.

He may be in a better position now to bargain for a new team or -- if this is a ploy to enhance his status with Ineos -- a guarantee from Ineos that Froome will be the designated team leader. Right now he can bluff, forcing people to wonder whether he's managed a miraculous recovery from serious injuries.

But if he does poorly in whatever races occur later this year, he'll be in a weaker position to negotiate.
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Old 05-16-20, 11:39 PM
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Now it appears that Froome was miffed because Ineos didn't respond to Bernal's comment during an interview that he wouldn't sacrifice himself for Froome or Thomas if Bernal was at 100% and felt he could win.

I'm not sure how long Bernal's contract extends but it's likely he or Froome will depart Ineos after 2020. My bet is on Froome leaving.

Sky/Ineos have always been about the corporate approach and the riders are just cogs in the machine. They're going to see the trend that favors younger riders and go with Bernal for a team that will be in its prime for the next several years.

During interviews over the past few years Sagan has talked about how much the peloton has changed during his career. Seems young for him to talk in the retrospective perspective, but he's been around for a decade. The peloton is filled with younger hotshots who aren't as committed to supporting a designated team leader for the duration and are likely to mutiny at the first whiff of weakness if the leader has a bad day.

Ineos hasn't given any clear indication to the public or Froome that they're committed to backing him as designated leader. Froome built his career on playing it safe overall throughout a grand tour, with occasional breakout performances to show that he could dominate almost any stage if he wanted to risk the tour for the sake of winning more stages. But the way he faltered for the first two weeks of the 1918 Giro might be taken as a sign by a younger rider like Bernal to attack the leader rather than seeing whether Froome can pull a rabbit out of his hat again in the third week.

Not knowing whether he can depend on his own squad for three weeks would force Froome to change his tactics, perhaps push harder on early stages rather than riding according to the power meter for the full three week grind.

So, yeah, it's a mess that Ineos contributed to by not immediately issuing a team statement (or, presumably, private message to Froome) following Bernal's recent interview.

I'm betting Bernal's comment caught everyone off guard. Up until now Bernal seemed like the opposite of an arrogant media loudmouth. It's likely the furor is exaggerating an offhand comment that was somewhat out of context. But Ineos definitely has some fence mending to do now.
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Old 05-17-20, 12:37 AM
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maybe in a normal year, ineos could have froomie, bernal and thomas draw straws to lead whichever gt and be a super-domestique/leader in waiting for their choice
of gt. not perfect but in a truncated year, something's gotta give. froomie's got a lotta mileage but some team will bend over backwards to fit him in...if only for sept/oct
this year.

was really looking forward to the gt's this year. young punks like carapaz, bernal, mas, pogacar and roglic...vets like quintana, landa, thomas, krusjin, majka and dumou...the old age & treachery division
with valverde, froomie and nibbles. the gt's looked to be a little more competitive than usual. oh well.
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Old 05-17-20, 02:07 PM
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I'd guess that Ineos sees Bernal and Carapaz to be the future and that Froome is last-years model.

Geraint Thomas is 33 years old. He might have a couple of great GT runs left in him, but his glory, at least with Ineos, is mostly in the past.
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Old 05-17-20, 04:37 PM
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Froome's been with Sky pretty much from the start. And Bradley Wiggins was brought in very soon too. Sky's mission then was to have a Brit win the TdF within 4 years. They did it in three. They more than any other team had the mantra of every team member working for one person with only one goal... win the TdF. Stage wins were only if the goal wasn't compromised.

With Bradley Wiggins being the first Brit and Froome a four time TdF winner they've met the original goal. With Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal taking the last two TdF's, Ineos might be thinking a TdF win by the new kid on the block, Bernal more of a sure thing than a fifth Tdf win for Froome. So now you got some of the issues of multiple desires that won't have everyone working for just one person that seemed to plague Movistar at times.
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Old 05-17-20, 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
Froome's been with Sky pretty much from the start. And Bradley Wiggins was brought in very soon too. Sky's mission then was to have a Brit win the TdF within 4 years. They did it in three. They more than any other team had the mantra of every team member working for one person with only one goal... win the TdF. Stage wins were only if the goal wasn't compromised.

With Bradley Wiggins being the first Brit and Froome a four time TdF winner they've met the original goal. With Geraint Thomas and Egan Bernal taking the last two TdF's, Ineos might be thinking a TdF win by the new kid on the block, Bernal more of a sure thing than a fifth Tdf win for Froome. So now you got some of the issues of multiple desires that won't have everyone working for just one person that seemed to plague Movistar at times.
True that, but water under the bridge. Ineos is not Sky and doesn't have the same national attachments.

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Old 05-18-20, 01:27 AM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
I'd guess that Ineos sees Bernal and Carapaz to be the future and that Froome is last-years model.

Geraint Thomas is 33 years old. He might have a couple of great GT runs left in him, but his glory, at least with Ineos, is mostly in the past.
GT is 33 but then Froome is "only" 34, hardly big difference there although being SKY/INEOS they are bound to have tons of data charting the decline of physical performance between ages 33 and 35.....
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Old 05-18-20, 02:37 AM
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it's been a looong offseason but didn't ineos sign carapaz? *edit...oh Minn Man's post (#5)...* carapaz, bernal, tgh, sivakov and sosa ain't a shabby young core.

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Old 05-18-20, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
True that, but water under the bridge. Ineos is not Sky and doesn't have the same national attachments.
Well that is pretty much my point, the goal was achieved eight years ago. Now they are pretty much like any other team and will have no goal that makes them more unique than any other team. Even the possible five time TdF winner for Froome might be less a sure thing since it's been three years and a really bad crash since the last 2017 victory for him. So the teams money source might not want to go that route even if the team management thinks it's possible. The money pockets for the team might feel a better bang for their buck to be one of the new guys.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out. I really don't see Froome leaving. It just serves him no purpose to sign his contract before he has too. Certainly Froome and Thomas being senior and founding members of the team still deserve some consideration of their desires. But the new guys are good and they aren't going to want to wait for the old guys to retire.
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Old 05-21-20, 04:55 AM
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Didn't this whole rumour stem from a quickly-removed tweet from another team?

But in any case, can't see how Ineos can efficiently run a team with 3 people gagging for a TdF win. Froome and Thomas are both in France training now, so their numbers will determine the outcome. Does anyone know where Bernal is?
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Old 05-21-20, 06:55 PM
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Originally Posted by SurferCyclist View Post
GT is 33 but then Froome is "only" 34, hardly big difference there although being SKY/INEOS they are bound to have tons of data charting the decline of physical performance between ages 33 and 35.....
Yes I agree with this, and further is the concern that Ineos and Froome may have two different views of what Froome can achieve post-recovery . . . he might bet on himself whereas the team has other younger talent mentioned above. My hunch is he will leave, and it's only a hunch . . . I'm not the most sophisticated follower of the pro tour teams, nor can I guess at which teams have the current makeup that would present him with the best chance of another win.
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Old 05-21-20, 08:35 PM
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it would be interesting if, as we have in certain other sports, trades as it were. froome to whichever team for a hot young tt prospect and a top ten sprinter or classics specialist (or whatever).
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Old 05-22-20, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by ooga-booga View Post
it would be interesting if, as we have in certain other sports, trades as it were. froome to whichever team for a hot young tt prospect and a top ten sprinter or classics specialist (or whatever).
I get the idea. But as to the specifics, Sky/Ineos seems uniquely focused on GT/GC. Except for a brief year when they had Cavendish, have they ever featured a marquee sprinter or Classics specialist?
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Old 05-23-20, 03:59 AM
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Good point, regarding the Sky/Ineos emphasis on the tour at the expense of stage wins or the classics.

In a truncated, compressed season, this should make the one day races more interesting. From a duffer's perspective, a stage win the the TdF, Giro or Vuelta means nothing. The overall winner gets all the glory, everyone else is forgotten among the general public. Kind of a shame for the cyclists who manage to win stages in the grand tours but are still considered "losers" if they aren't on the podium, after riding 20+ one-day races back to back for three weeks.

I can't even imagine a three week race. I can relate to the concept of a one day race. But it takes a whole nuther mindset to grind it out for three weeks. That's why Froome might still be a factor until age 40 if he wants it, barring injury or illness. He seems to have that indefatigable mentality. Opponents have described the sensation of feeling like they've put Froome behind them, but every time they look around he's still there, a little closer all the time. Like that posse in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. "Who are those guys!?"
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Old 05-25-20, 03:06 PM
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If I were INEOS, seeding rumors that lead my competitors to suspect team discord would be precisely the sort of psychological strategy I would pursue ahead of an unusual season in which the more usual preparations and marginal gains might be harder to implement.
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Old 05-25-20, 05:00 PM
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That's almost too conspiracy theory like to me. Contract end dates are a known thing. Any savvy reporter on cycling will be watching that and other public info things to write about. I'm sure every pro knows when every other pro's contract is up.

I think it serves no purpose for most of the elite riders to sign until it's closer to the end of their contract. When they sign, that means they give up on better offers from others. As well as ends their bargaining power with management. A less elite rider might be better served by taking the first offer before he's let go for another rider from another team or a newbie.
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Old 05-26-20, 09:16 AM
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Getting out the popcorn while this plays out!!!!
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Old 05-26-20, 11:57 PM
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I think this is hyped up too much:

"But I also put myself in a position. I’m young, I’ve already won one Tour de France, and I’m not going to throw away an opportunity to win another Tour de France, that’s for sure. That I would sacrifice myself, being at my 100 per cent… I don’t think I’m going to do that, nor will he, nor will anyone."

I don't see anything wrong with that. If Froome is miffed because the incumbent champion won't solely ride for him, then it's Froome who has an issue. And Ineos won't have it - they let Thomas ride for the win and the next year they let Bernal ride for the win.
"What I think is going to happen is we wait to see how each rider arrives at the Tour. We haven’t raced, so we don’t know how we’ll arrive. For me, what the team’s doing is very good – waiting to see how each rider arrives and then, it might sound trite, but the road will put everyone in their place," he said.

"Once the first stages are out of the way, we’re quickly going to see what position Froome’s in, what position I’m in, and what position Thomas is in, and little by little the outlook will be clearer. In this moment in time, even as the last champion of the Tour, I can’t go to the team and tell them I’m the only leader, because, as I said, I understand there’s Froome and Thomas and I understand the position of the team.

"At the moment, it’s a question of having a cool head, focusing on training, trying to do things as well as possible, get to the Tour and then things will fall into place."

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Old 05-27-20, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by ZHVelo View Post
I think this is hyped up too much:

"But I also put myself in a position. Iím young, Iíve already won one Tour de France, and Iím not going to throw away an opportunity to win another Tour de France, thatís for sure. That I would sacrifice myself, being at my 100 per centÖ I donít think Iím going to do that, nor will he, nor will anyone."

I don't see anything wrong with that. If Froome is miffed because the incumbent champion won't solely ride for him, then it's Froome who has an issue. And Ineos won't have it - they let Thomas ride for the win and the next year they let Bernal ride for the win.
"What I think is going to happen is we wait to see how each rider arrives at the Tour. We havenít raced, so we donít know how weíll arrive. For me, what the teamís doing is very good Ė waiting to see how each rider arrives and then, it might sound trite, but the road will put everyone in their place," he said.

"Once the first stages are out of the way, weíre quickly going to see what position Froomeís in, what position Iím in, and what position Thomas is in, and little by little the outlook will be clearer. In this moment in time, even as the last champion of the Tour, I canít go to the team and tell them Iím the only leader, because, as I said, I understand thereís Froome and Thomas and I understand the position of the team.

"At the moment, itís a question of having a cool head, focusing on training, trying to do things as well as possible, get to the Tour and then things will fall into place."
Whether he's miffed or not, I would imagine that being designated the team leader / supported GC contender is precisely the issue for Froome. It's reasonable to assume he has only a few years remaining to challenge for another grand tour win. Ineos has other contenders for team leader, younger than he -- namely Bernal, and to a lesser degree Thomas and Carapaz. If Froome wishes to contend, he might consider moving to another team that will designate him as their leader. I have no preference as to whether he leaves or stays, but in his shoes I would be looking for another team. I think Sunweb or Lotto Soudal make sense for his consideration.
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Old 05-28-20, 12:36 AM
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Originally Posted by jimmyodonnell View Post
Whether he's miffed or not, I would imagine that being designated the team leader / supported GC contender is precisely the issue for Froome. It's reasonable to assume he has only a few years remaining to challenge for another grand tour win. Ineos has other contenders for team leader, younger than he -- namely Bernal, and to a lesser degree Thomas and Carapaz. If Froome wishes to contend, he might consider moving to another team that will designate him as their leader. I have no preference as to whether he leaves or stays, but in his shoes I would be looking for another team. I think Sunweb or Lotto Soudal make sense for his consideration.
But can he change mid-season?

And the other problem is - if it turns out he is the strongest of the 3, he would be the leader. If he is not, then going to another team probably won't help either, he isn't the strongest of them and any other team probably cannot deliver support the way Ineos can.
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Old 05-28-20, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by ZHVelo View Post
But can he change mid-season?

And the other problem is - if it turns out he is the strongest of the 3, he would be the leader. If he is not, then going to another team probably won't help either, he isn't the strongest of them and any other team probably cannot deliver support the way Ineos can.
I don't know this for certain, but I believe he can change teams at any time if he's out of contract.
Riders never change at this time of year . . . but this time of year is typically mid-season, while this year it's pre-season.
I agree that no other team can likely support him as well as Ineos, but if he stays with Ineos and he's not the leader he won't have their support for a grand tour win . . . he might be inclined to take what support he can get with another team in the interest of bidding for a win.
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Old 05-28-20, 03:01 PM
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There are quite a few top pro's that haven't signed a contract for next year. So there are plenty that might be on another team next year. There are plenty that will stay with their current team, and some that won't be signed.

I filtered this list for just World Tour cyclist, but looking at the URL you might have to run the filter again.

https://www.procyclingstats.com/teams/no-team-next-year
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Old 05-28-20, 11:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
There are quite a few top pro's that haven't signed a contract for next year. So there are plenty that might be on another team next year. There are plenty that will stay with their current team, and some that won't be signed.

I filtered this list for just World Tour cyclist, but looking at the URL you might have to run the filter again.

https://www.procyclingstats.com/teams/no-team-next-year
But what does "next year" mean? Next calendar year? Surely this year's TdF still falls under this year. And this year, Froome has a contract to fulfill.
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Old 05-29-20, 09:31 AM
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Well what do you think it means? I expect that it means that currently Froome and many others have not signed a contract for the 2021 cycling season. Whether the specific end date is the last official race of the 2020 season or some negotiated date in between, I don't know.

It's not an odd thing either. This happens every year. Not for everyone, some have multi-year contracts that haven't come due and others not so lucky just get yearly contracts. I'm sure Froomes current contract probably started many years ago.

If you were a top cyclist in the World Tour team would you sign the first new contract the team threw at you? I wouldn't. If I thought I was still a valuable commodity, then I'd hold out signing as long as I could.. If I thought I was washed up and no one else will want me, I'd probably take the first offer.
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