Egan Bernal: It is time to be back at the Tour de France

Colombian Egan Bernal of Team Ineos wearing the yellow jersey pictured ahead of the final stage of the 106th edition of the Tour de France cycling race from Rambouillet to Paris ChampsElysees 128km France Sunday 28 July 2019 This years Tour de France starts in Brussels and takes place from July 6th to July 28thBELGA PHOTO YORICK JANSENS Photo credit should read YORICK JANSENSAFP via Getty Images
Egan Bernal of Team Ineos wearing the yellow jersey at the 2019 Tour de France (Image credit: Getty Images)

Egan Bernal has revealed that he would like to race the Tour de France next year, saying that it is time that he was back at the race that he won in 2019.

Speaking to Cyclingnews at the Giro d’Italia Criterium in Dubai, the Ineos Grenadiers rider said: “I think I have to see the parcours so far, but hopefully I will be riding in the Tour. I would probably like to be back there, and to do well again.”

The Colombian won the Giro d’Italia and raced the Vuelta a España this year, but did not ride the Tour de France as a result. But on Friday he explained: “I don't know if I will do the Giro, because it will depend on what the course is. This year, I did the Giro, so it's time to be back there [the Tour de France].”

Bernal was the last rider before Tadej Pogačar to win the Tour de France, but has not completed a full edition since then. While his full race programme for the new season is yet to be settled with his team, he stated: “Next year I would like to be back in France.”

The 24-year old has struggled with injury problems, particularly those affecting his back, since his Tour victory in 2019. He pulled out of the 2020 Tour after stage 16 2020 due to a flare up of those back issues. He said that those issues have not gone away, but there was hope for a better season in 2022. 

“To be honest, I had some problems even this year. But now I'm feeling even better," Bernal said.

“We know the injury I have, it takes some time to recover 100 per cent, but what we want to do is go to the races and try to go full gas with some pain.

“More pain in the legs than in the back, that will be our big objective this year. But for sure I have a better condition now than I had this time last year.”

Bernal also stated his desire to return to Italy at some point in the future, after he won the Giro at his first attempt this year. He explained: “For sure, I want to be back at the Giro, as it is one of my favourite races, as I've lived in Italy before and I have some friends there, so I would really like to be back.”

The route of the 2022 Tour de France has already been announced, with 53km of time trials bookending the race route, while there are also trips to the Vosges, the Alps and the Pyrenees along the way.

Giro d’Italia organiser RCS Sport will reveal the full course of the 2022 edition in installments over the next week. While the opening three stages of the Grande Partenza in Hungary has already been revealed, the flat stages, medium mountain stages, high mountain stages and the expected final time trial are yet to be announced.

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Adam Becket is the staff writer for Procycling magazine. Prior to covering the sport of cycling, he wrote about ecclesiastical matters for the Church Times and politics for Business Insider. He has degrees in history and journalism. A keen cyclist himself, Adam’s favourite race is the Tour of Flanders or Strade Bianche, and he can't wait to go to the Piazza del Campo for the end of the race one day.