Tom Dumoulin has yet to race in 2020 and has not yet competed with his Tour de France co-leaders Primož Roglič and Steven Kruijswijk but the Dutchman is becoming more optimistic that racing will actually start again in August and plans to kick off his season racing in France.
"It looks good that the season can start again in August," Dumoulin said in a team press release. "In March and April, I was still a bit sceptical, but now it's looking better by the day. In concrete terms that means that we are going to focus fully on the races again.
"In my case the Tour de France. That's why we've kept June 1st as the starting date within the team to fully focus on the training sessions and the preparations that come with that."
Dumoulin has not raced since the Critérium du Dauphiné almost a full year ago but he said he feels in training like he did in 2018, when he came second to Geraint Thomas in the Tour de France.
"In training, I feel like Tom Dumoulin from two years ago again, but still I often wonder what it will be like when I am back at the start of a race," he said. "I haven't been able to prove myself yet for my new team Jumbo-Visma. I really want to shine in these colours.
"As it looks now, I will start to prepare for the Tour de France in a number of races in France. After that, we'll have to see, but I'll probably also start in a number of Classics and the World Championships."
Racing in France begins on August 1 with the four-stage UCI 2.1-ranked La Route d'Occitanie - La Dépêche du Midi and the Mont Ventoux Dénivelé Challenge on August 6. Roglic is expected to start at the Tour de l'Ain from August 7-9 followed by the Critérium du Dauphiné, August 12-16. The Tour de France begins on August 29.
"I am now in full preparation for the Tour de France. We are going to prepare as well as possible. The Tour is the biggest of the biggest and I would very much like to win it once. So I hope it will succeed. And I think with this team, we'll definitely be able to do that. We go with three leaders to the Tour: Primoz Roglic, Steven Kruijswijk and me.
"All three of us will get the chance to prove ourselves, but in the end, we'll ride for the one who turns out to be the strongest. In principle, we go in very open. If I finally prove to be stronger than Primoz and Steven, then I have a world class team in my service to try to win the Tour. And the other way around of course.
"At the moment it's hard to say which of us has the best chances. Based on the past months I would say Primož, but none of the three of us have been able to prove ourselves this year."
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