Thibaut Pinot, Romain Bardet and Guillaume Martin will all feature in the French team for the European Championships road race in Trento on September 12 as France opts for an aggressive line-up to take on some big-name rivals.
The eight-man French line-up also includes Warren Barguil, Aurélien Paret-Peintre, Valentin Madouas, Pierre-Luc Périchon and Benoît Cosnefroy, who showcased his form by out-sprinting Julian Alaphilippe to win the Bretagne Classic at the weekend.
World champion Alaphilippe will not be present as he will be in action with his Deceuninck-QuickStep squad at the Tour of Britain.
The road race in Trento is 179.2km in length on a hilly parcours after climbing Monte Bondone, and French national coach Thomas Voeckler envisages an aggressive event. Favourites to win the European title include Tadej Pogačar (Slovenia), Remco Evenepoel (Belgium) and Peter Sagan (Slovakia).
"Against guys like that, if you wait then you’re beaten," Voeckler told L’Équipe.
Pinot only returned to competition at the Tour du Limousin and Tour Poitou-Charentes last month after losing most of the 2021 season to a lingering back injury, but immediately showed form and aggression.
Others on the French selection have enjoyed recent success, including the Vuelta a España stage winner Bardet and the Tour du Limousin winner Barguil. Martin, meanwhile, lies fifth overall at the Vuelta with four days remaining.
Bruno Armirail and Rémi Cavagna will line out in the men’s individual time trial for France on September 9.
In the elite women’s road race, France will be represented by Audrey Cordon-Ragot, Juliette Labous, Aude Biannic, Victorie Guilman, Coralie Demay and Gladys Verhulst. Cordon-Ragot and Labous will also compete in the individual time trial.
Armirail, Demay and Verhulst will compete in the mixed relay event on September 8 together with Alexis Gougeard, Benjamin Thomas and Eugénie Duval.
French team for elite men’s road race (September 12):
- Romain Bardet (Team DSM)
- Warren Barguil (Arkéa-Samsic)
- Aurélien Paret-Peintre (AG2R-Citroën)
- Benoît Cosnefroy (AG2R-Citroën)
- Valentin Madouas (Groupama-FDJ)
- Thibaut Pinot (Groupama-FDJ)
- Guillaume Martin (Cofidis)
- Pierre-Luc Périchon (Cofidis)
French team for elite women's road race (September 11):
- Audrey Cordon-Ragot (Trek-Segafredo)
- Juliette Labous (Team DSM)
- Aude Biannic (Movistar Team)
- Victorie Guilman (FDJ Nouvelle-Aquitaine)
- Coralie Demay (Charente-Maritime)
- Gladys Verhulst (Team Arkéa)
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