Defending champ Jonas Vingegaard fit to compete at Tour de France

defending champ jonas vingegaard fit to compete at tour de france

FILE -Tour de France winner Denmark's Jonas Vingegaard, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey, lifts his bicycle after the twenty-first stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 115 kilometers (71.5 miles) with start in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines and finish on the Champs-Elysees avenue in Paris, France, Sunday, July 23, 2023. Two-time Tour de France champion Jonas Vingegaard has recovered in time to defend his title next week although there are still doubts about his ability to be competitive. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus, File)

BRUSSELS (AP) — Two-time Tour de France champion Jonas Vingegaard has recovered in time to defend his title next week although there are still doubts about his ability to be competitive.

Vingegaard was seriously injured in a crash in April but will be on the starting line next week when the race kicks off from Italy, the Danish rider’s Visma-Lease a Bike team said on Thursday.

His trusted teammate Wout van Aert, who broke his collarbone and several ribs in March in another crash, will also race in support of Vingegaard.

The three-week Tour starts on June 29 in Florence.

“I am excited to start the Tour. The last few months have not always been easy," Vingegaard said. "We have worked together to get to this moment and, of course, I am very excited to see where I stand. I feel good and very motivated.”

defending champ jonas vingegaard fit to compete at tour de france

FILE - Sepp Kuss of the U.S. rides during the sixteenth stage of the Tour de France cycling race, an individual time trial over 22.5 kilometers (14 miles) with start in Passy and finish in Combloux, France, Tuesday, July 18, 2023. Two-time Tour de France champion Jonas Vingegaard has recovered in time to defend his title next week although there are still doubts about his ability to be competitive. Matteo Jorgenson of the U.S. is also part of the squad alongside countryman Sepp Kuss, Christophe Laporte, Tiesj Benoot, Wilco Kelderman and Jan Tratnik. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole, File)

Vingegaard was hospitalized for nearly two weeks in Spain in April following the multi-rider, high-speed crash in the Tour of the Basque Country. He sustained a broken collarbone and ribs and a collapsed lung.

Before the crash, Vingegaard was considered one of the Tour de France favorites alongside Tadej Pogacar, who won the Giro d’Italia and is aiming for a rare double next month.

“I am very proud of Jonas and the coaching team," his team sporting director Merijn Zeeman said. "He is coming back from a serious injury. In the last few weeks, he has shown what a champion he is, both mentally and physically. Of course, we don’t know how far he can go yet. We are being cautious because he has not been able to race, and his preparation has been less than ideal, to say the least. But he will be there, healthy and motivated.”

Van Aert crashed during the Dwars door Vlaanderen in Belgium. He has been training at altitude in the French ski resort of Tignes with Vingegaard.

“Of course, this was not the plan initially, but after my development in the last weeks, I really wanted it, and the team agreed," the Van Aert said. "Our main goal is, of course, to ride a top classification with Jonas. I want to contribute to that with an excellent team.”

defending champ jonas vingegaard fit to compete at tour de france

FILE - Matteo Jorgenson of the U.S. rides the last kilometers of the ninth stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 182.5 kilometers (113.5 miles) with start in Saint-Leonard-de-Noblat and finish in Puy de Dome, France, Sunday, July 9, 2023. Two-time Tour de France champion Jonas Vingegaard has recovered in time to defend his title next week although there are still doubts about his ability to be competitive. Matteo Jorgenson of the U.S. is also part of the squad alongside countryman Sepp Kuss, Christophe Laporte, Tiesj Benoot, Wilco Kelderman and Jan Tratnik. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole, File)

Van Aert is widely considered one of the world’s best and most versatile riders. The three-time cyclocross world champion is also the winner of nine Tour stages and the points classification. He's major race wins include Milan-San Remo, Strade Bianche, Gent-Wevelgem and the Amstel Gold Race.

defending champ jonas vingegaard fit to compete at tour de france

FILE - Belgium's Wout Van Aert rides during the sixteenth stage of the Tour de France cycling race, in Combloux, France, on July 18, 2023. Two-time Tour de France champion Jonas Vingegaard has recovered in time to defend his title next week although there are still doubts about his ability to be competitive. His trusted teammate Wout van Aert, who broke his collarbone and several ribs in March in another crash, will also race in support of Vingegaard. (AP Photo/Daniel Cole, File)

Matteo Jorgenson of the U.S. is also part of the squad alongside countryman Sepp Kuss, Christophe Laporte, Tiesj Benoot, Wilco Kelderman and Jan Tratnik.

“Matteo Jorgenson has already become one of the strongest riders in the team this year, with wins in Paris-Nice and Dwars door Vlaanderen, and his second place in the Dauphiné," Zeeman said. “Sepp Kuss proved last year that he is a great climber, an important domestique, and a leader in his own right with a victory in the Vuelta a España.”

___

AP sports: https://apnews.com/sports

Samuel Petrequin, The Associated Press

OTHER NEWS

27 minutes ago

Tom Daley opens the door to competing at a record sixth Olympics in Los Angeles... as the Team GB star reveals how his children inspired a return at Paris 2024

27 minutes ago

Today we caught a glimpse of the true heart of Labour - illiberal and bullying: STEPHEN GLOVER

30 minutes ago

Rare SpaceX rocket failure shows exactly why NASA wants 2 commercial options to fly astronauts to ISS

30 minutes ago

Russian journalist who uncovered Putin's daughter now a fugitive

30 minutes ago

PSL records: Kaizer Chiefs’ youngest players ever

30 minutes ago

Microsoft decides diversity ‘no longer business critical’ and sacks DEI team

30 minutes ago

'Special' skipper defended as minutes criticism lingers

30 minutes ago

Analysts: American economy transitions to below-trend growth

30 minutes ago

Sinn Fein praises Labour commitment to repeal Tory amnesty act

30 minutes ago

Bills-Steelers join list of NFL teams holding joint practice together during 2024 training camp

30 minutes ago

Severe storms devastate upstate New York, Midwest, leaving at least 3 dead

30 minutes ago

AP Source: Bears sign Caleb Williams and Rome Odunze to four-year deals

30 minutes ago

Humana-Paredes, Wilkerson reunite for shot at Olympic beach volleyball glory

30 minutes ago

Norton Motorcycles Is Back, Will Launch Six New Bikes in the Next Three Years

30 minutes ago

Browns and LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah 'struggling to see eye-to-eye' on contract talks

31 minutes ago

New mobile app by AXS allows cardless payment at commercial carparks

31 minutes ago

Duke-NUS scientists discover protein that plays key role in ageing

31 minutes ago

Varadkar: Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil 'rapidly becoming sister parties' but merger not likely

31 minutes ago

Chris Simms ranks 40 NFL QBs, including Cowboys' Dak Prescott

31 minutes ago

Rom-Com 'Because I Want No Loss' Starring Shin Min-a, Kim Young-dae to Premieres in August

31 minutes ago

GOP rep speaks out after attack by anti-Israel protester at RNC: We will not allow them to ‘intimidate us’

31 minutes ago

8 Best Centers The Los Angeles Lakers Could Land This Summer

31 minutes ago

‘A plague of liars’: what caused the disastrous pitches at Copa América?

31 minutes ago

‘The Crown’ Leads Departing Series In Emmy Nominations At 18

31 minutes ago

Waller says Fed getting closer to cutting interest rates as inflation slows

31 minutes ago

11 Chicago restaurants named among ‘iconic' list of restaurants nationwide

31 minutes ago

The Acolyte Episode 8: What That Red Lightsaber Means - And How It Changed

31 minutes ago

List of top Emmy nominees

31 minutes ago

A meteor streaked across the NYC skyline before disintegrating over New Jersey

31 minutes ago

‘Shogun’ tops all Emmy nominees with 25 and ‘The Bear’ leads comedies with 23, setting a new comedy series record

31 minutes ago

Emmy Awards 2024: The full list of nominations

31 minutes ago

Charli XCX hints at plans to quit music in shock career change

31 minutes ago

Olympic champion Richard Carapaz wins Tour de France Stage 17

35 minutes ago

Britain's new government commits to building Holocaust memorial

35 minutes ago

How on-time rent payments can help 'credit invisible' consumers be seen

35 minutes ago

Ex-Trump aide Peter Navarro to speak at RNC hours after leaving jail

35 minutes ago

Country singer Ingrid Andress says she was drunk during awful performance of US national anthem

35 minutes ago

John Deere turns back on wokeness, rejects DEI policies: ‘Committed to our customers’

35 minutes ago

Costco's New Deli Item Is Facing Major Criticism: 'Not Good'

35 minutes ago

Commanders have still not yet assigned Tress Way a number

ALONGWALKER VIETNAM: Kênh khám phá trải nghiệm của giới trẻ, thế giới du lịch ALONGWALKER INDONESIA: Saluran untuk mengeksplorasi pengalaman para pemuda global