Speaking to Sky Sports News, Chris Froome (Sky) said that pulling out of the 2014 Tour de France was “one of the hardest things I have ever done.”
“We were on such a high after the first few stages over in the UK,” Froome said. “The support over there was insane, second to none, and it just felt like such a deflation getting over to France and crashing on stage 4 like that.
“Knowing that it could be the end of the Tour and having to start next day with that at the back of the mind — it was definitely right up there with setbacks as far as setbacks go.”
However, he admits his main goal is next year’s Tour.
“It’s been quite refreshing to come in now knowing I’m not going in as defending Tour de France champion again,” Froome said. “I can probably fly under the radar a little bit more now. I’ve definitely had a taste of how much more pressure going in as reigning champion. It’s not an easy position to be in.
“For me I don’t need any fuel for the Tour de France. It’s a race where I’m always going to give it my all to and do my fighting best. It will definitely spur me on to be absolutely ready for next year’s edition. It’s just one of those things. I’m just going to have to suck it up now and move on.”