“He’s missed Catalunya, of course, and Pais Vasco, but California was where he was supposed to get back to racing anyway for the Tour, so it’s good news,” Mitchelton-Scott directeur sportif Matt White told Cyclingnews.
Yates crashed heavily at the end of stage 3 of the Volta a Catalunya, leaving the race in an ambulance and heading to a nearby hospital for a check-up. He was diagnosed with a fractured pelvis, although the fracture was later reported to be stable. His team said after the accident he would spend 10 days off the bike before getting back to training. Meanwhile, Yates’ brother and teammate Simon won the final stage of the Volta a Catalunya and took fourth overall.
As April comes to an end, though, Adam has put his injury behind him and is building again for the summer.
“We’re preparing on the normal schedule for July, he’ll do California and then the Criterium du Dauphiné,” White added. “We’re on track for where we need to be.”
As for the Tour itself and what Yates, fourth in the Tour de France in 2016, can do there this year, White says they will be taking it on the day by day.
“For most GC guys, the first battle will be getting through the first nine days with their options intact as their first objective,” he points out.
“I would expect most of the GC guys, maybe half, to be off the GC even before we’ve seen one climb. There’s a team time trial on stage 3, where I can really see some teams putting a minute and a half into their rivals, and then there’s the pave' and the stress of the crosswinds and the narrow roads and everything that makes the first week of the Tour de France what it always is.”
Simon Yates and Esteban Chaves on track for Giro d'Italia
Simon Yates and Esteban Chaves will lead Mitchelton-Scott at the Giro d’Italia, with White claiming that their preparation is going “very well."
“Esteban has been in Colombia for a month and then he comes back this weekend, before heading to the Giro d’Italia, whereas Simon has stopped after Catalunya and has been training up in Andorra," White said.
“Both have been training in different parts of the world at altitude, but they’re both doing well.”
As for the Giro itself, “the finish on Mount Etna on stage 6 will definitely be the first rendezvous for the GC favourites. We go up a long side, a side we’ve not used before, and that’ll be the first opportunity for the good guys to suss each other out and look at where things stand.
“The big efforts for the GC guys are quite sporadic. There are never two consecutive days of big efforts, apart from when you get into the last week. So, I think you’ll see a very aggressive style of racing on those few days.”