The 2012 Tour de France has been one to forget for Garmin-Sharp but there was some good news when Christian Vande Velde confirmed that he would race in 2013. The 36-year-old's contract expires at the end of this season and although he may not be the Tour rider of 2008, when he finished fourth, he still adds experience and strength to the team. He was instrumental in Ryder Hesjedal's win in the Giro d'Italia this May and finished second in last year's Tour of Colorado.
At this stage Vande Velde is considering his options but made it clear that he wished to see out his career with the team he signed for in 2008.
"I'm definitely going to ride again next year," he told Cyclingnews
"We'll see what happens. The team and I are still talking .We'll see. I would love to stay with Garmin, there's no doubt about it. it just depends about the racing and what I can and can't do in my last year of racing," he added.
Vande Velde came into the Tour as a super domestique for Hesjedal but the team found themselves on the back foot after a number of crashes and disappointing stages. With Hesjedal out of the race injured and no GC prospect the team has gone on the hunt for stages wins. Vande Velde and David Millar both attempted to infiltrate the break on stage 8 to Porrentruy but came up short. Vande Velde did manage to finish in the third group on the road though and added that is motivation is still high, despite the team's current Tour performance.
"I tried but I was in a bunch of wrong moves. Sometimes when you're too aggressive you're not thinking straight, sometimes when you even have good legs you just have to be patient.
"Our race couldn't have gone much worse. We'll keep on trying and I tried all day today and even pushed a bit in the final for no other reason than to show that I've still got it. It's good for morale and it's better than just riding in twenty minutes later. We'll obviously try for stages and try something. I'm still healing up, I'm still beaten up and swollen but I sacrificed a lot for this race and I'm not going to just ride in the grupetto after the Tour."