Chris Froome insists there is no rivalry within the team at the Tour de France

'The race will decide that' says Team Sky rider of co-leadership with Thomas

Chris Froome (Team Sky) has played down any rivalry within the camp, insisting that the road will sort out the Tour de France contenders from each other. On the first rest day of the race Froome sits 8th overall, 1:42 down on race leader Greg Van Avermaet but 59 seconds down on his Team Sky teammate Geraint Thomas.

Thomas came into the Tour on the back of a winning ride at the Critérium du Dauphiné but with Team Sky's dominance at the Tour in recent years, any hint of an internal rivalry within the squad is exaggerated. Froome comes into the Tour as the defending champion and has won the last three Grand Tours. The consensus is that Thomas is the team's plan B, even though he has not put a foot wrong since the Tour de France began over a week ago.

"The race will decide that," Froome told reporters when asked about Team Sky's leadership on the race's first rest-day in Chambery.

"For us it's fantastic to have the options to play with. Movistar are here with three leaders. For one GC guy to cover all three is very difficult so this gives us options. That's a great place for us to be in and Geraint is right up there with the other GC guys. It's for those teams to attack us. Geraint is riding great and that puts us in great place."

Froome lost time on the opening stage of the Tour after a late crash but he came through the cobbled stage on Sunday relatively well. He fell again but quickly regained contact with the leaders and finished in a group containing the vast majority of the GC contenders. A number of overall contenders did fall, including Mikel Landa and Rigoberto Uran, while BMC Racing's Richie Porte crashed out with a fractured collarbone.

"There were a lot of crashes yesterday. I went down but I'm not injured at all but some guys did come down hard yesterday and it will be interesting to see, once we get into the mountains how much of a part that has to play to play. I'm great. I'm right where I wanted to be coming into the race, bar losing time on the very first stage. I'm optimistic about the rest of the race," Froome added.

Earlier in the race Team Sky's Nicolas Portal suggested that Froome could defend his Vuelta a España crown. Froome remained on the fence with regards to a Grand Tour that is still several weeks away, instead choosing to focus on the here and now.

"It's a bit difficult to think about that during the Tour. I'm focused on getting through the next few days and then to the end of the race. My wife and I are expecting a baby towards the end of the Tour, so hopefully I make it back in time, so there are a lot of factors to considers but nothing is set In stone yet."

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