We caught up with the Butterfly of Maastricht at Team Sunweb's season debrief in Holland on Thursday. Despite still nursing a cold that brought an end to his season, Dumoulin was in fine spirits and talked openly about his Giro win, how riding clean is pivotal for him as he becomes a sporting icon, and of course whether or not he will head to the Tour de France in 2018 to take on Chris Froome.
"It's not my motivation just to challenge Froome," Dumoulin told us.
"If I go to the Tour I want to fight for victory, but there's a lot of guys and you have to beat them all to win. It's not a clash of the titans between me and Froome. Some journalists like to paint that picture and it's nice, but I don't look at it that way. He's the biggest and the best GT rider at the moment but let's see in the future."
As well as having a hugely successful year on the road, Dumoulin has also consistently talked about his stance on doping. He has previously released power data, and spoken out about the use of TUEs within the sport. In this episode he talks about the responsibilities of riding clean, his views on his competitors and of course the pros and cons of going to next year's Tour de France.
"With doping, I don't know how you'd feel about a victory if you doped. I couldn't imagine that you'd have the same amazing feeling that I had at the Giro or the Worlds. I can't see me doing that. Also when you look back at your career after, and if you doped, then all these people that started cycling because of you, they'd be so disappointed. It would be heart-breaking. And in the present, everyone relies on riding clean. There are more than 100 people on the team and it would be fucked up. That's a responsibility."
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