Tom Dumoulin (Sunweb) has said that he has not yet decided whether he will ride the Tour de France in 2018, insisting that he will await the presentation of the routes of next year's Grand Tours before deciding on his race programme.
The 2018 Tour de France route will be presented in Paris on Tuesday, while the Giro d'Italia presentation is slated for November 29 in Milan. After claiming Giro victory and the individual time trial at the World Championships this season, Dumoulin has been tipped as perhaps the prime challenger to Chris Froome (Team Sky) at next year's Tour.
"In truth, I haven't decided yet. It depends on the routes," Dumoulin told La Gazzetta dello Sport. "It's true that I've already fought for the general classification at the Vuelta and the Giro, and not yet at the Tour. But if the Tour doesn't have a route that suits me, then why should I go there next year looking to win? I loved the Giro, and I'd really like to go back there."
When Dumoulin skipped the Tour in the wake of his Giro victory, it was initially expected that he would line out at the Vuelta a España, but he instead eschewed the Spanish Grand Tour in order to prepare more fully for the World Championships in Bergen. In future, however, Dumoulin said he would not rule out the idea of targeting two Grand Tours in the same season.
"Various riders have done it and are doing it," Dumoulin said. "Nibali targeted the Giro and the Vuelta this year, and he finished on the podium twice, so he had two excellent results. Yes, I'll try it myself too, but I don't know when."
While Dumoulin admitted that he had never really considered the idea, supported vociferously by the recently-retired Alberto Contador, of introducing a salary cap in cycling, he had a firmer opinion on the Spaniard's recommendation that power meters should be prohibited from use during races.
"For me, it's really not a problem. I never use them in races, only in time trials. I go on sensations," Dumoulin said. "I have to say that in my opinion, Contador is overestimating the influence that this instrument has on Froome's racing style, for example. I don't think Chris uses it that much. And the others don't either. You could take them away, but it wouldn't change much."