News: James Shaw for the Tour de France

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Britain’s James Shaw is one of the eight riders selected for EF Pro Cycling for the 2023 Tour de France. 

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News: James Shaw for the Tour de France


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Britain’s James Shaw is one of the eight riders selected for EF Pro Cycling for the 2023 Tour de France.  They are: Richard Carapaz, Rigoberto Uran, Neilson Powless, Alberto Bettiol, Magnus Cort, James Shaw, Andrey Amador, and Esteban Chaves. Those eight riders will take the start of the Tour de France in Bilbao on July 1 ready to take the fight to the world’s greatest bike race.

The team has a layered set of objectives and ways to achieve them. Some, like stages, are obvious goals of every team. But so often teams plan and the Tour de France laughs. Its 3,405 kilometers over serpentine roads and through teeming masses of fans are as predictable as mountain weather. Hence our lineup — it’s a team built to adapt and capitalize over a mixture of terrain and circumstance. It’s a team of racers, first and foremost.

Some fit into boxes as a climber, a breakaway man. And some don’t. We’re going to attack the race. The Tour is often a showcase of muscle and a sheer test of firepower. But there are nuances and cracks in the race this team is built to explore, and races within the race take shape.

James Shaw: Who would have thought, eh? The Tour de France. What a bike race. I didn’t really know what to make of it. The whole thing came about at the Dauphiné when I was riding better than I have ever ridden and it obviously didn’t go unnoticed. Our DS Charly pulled me over on the last day and he said, look, we’ll put you on the long list. We’ll send you home to prepare. Don’t do Ventoux Challenge. Go home and get ready and prepare as if you are going to go and I thought, is he pulling my leg? He said he is considering me, but is it a serious consideration and stuff? So I was like oh, don’t build yourself up too much. So I prepared as if I was going to go. I put everything into it, the best recovery I could have done, that sort of jazz. And then he rang me and said we’ll crack on with it, we’ll do it. So I thought, oh, this is actually going to happen. I was a bit sort of taken aback by it. I didn’t really know what to do.

James fighting back after a puncture on the first lap of the British Road Race Championships. James showed just how well he’s riding to finally get back to the front 

I am a bit nervous. I am a bit scared. It is obvious from the guys who are going that I am there to be the best teammate I can. We have got a hell of a roster. Starting on that start line is going to be incredible. Personally, Paris is something that I have on my mind. I want to make it all the way to, but along the way I want to make sure I am doing the job that I am going there to do and be there for the guys and Carapaz and all the boys get what they need and I can get to that finish line on wherever and whatever day and I can get on that bus knowing that I gave it everything for Neilson or whoever that job was for that day. I am in the best shape I have ever been in. I think now is the moment, now is the time to do it as well, so I am super excited.

I have this attitude in life that there are two people that you have got to make proud and they are the eight-year-old version of yourself and the eighty-year-old version of yourself. As long as the eight-year-old version of you looks up to you at the minute and thinks yeah, that guy is who I want to be and the eighty-year-old version of you looks back at you and says yeah, that is the person that I wanted to be, then it doesn’t really matter what anyone else thinks or feels. I think the eight-year-old version of James would be blown away right now.

Esteban Chaves: I heard the news that I would be on the Tour team and it is pretty exciting. After more than a decade of being a professional, hearing the news made me pumped. That means it is important and that means that I care about it and that I am still dreaming. The Tour de France is my dream. After I hung up with the DS and he had told me that I would do the Tour de France, I called my parents and I said this time you need to come, because I want you in Paris with me. They have never been. And it is a dream. It is where everything started for me, sitting on the couch, watching the Tour de France on television and just dreaming about being there and I am part of this now. I am actually living the dream. It is exciting. It is scary. It is a lot of emotions at the same time.

It is a big responsibility as well, and I am looking forward to it. We have worked really hard, with all the people around: the team, my family, my wife. Every single one is a little bit of this. And because of all of these people, so all of you guys, I can be a part of the team. Everybody works and we are looking forward to doing everything really well and playing the cards really well and making the dream come true.

We have a really nice and strong team. We can do a really nice GC. There is a lot of climbing this year: 14 stages are really tough, hard. And we can play the cards for stage wins with different riders, of course myself will be one of the riders to do that with the climbs. We can chase the mountain jersey. Why not? Why not?!

Richard Carapaz: I’m excited for the Tour to finally get underway. I’m training for it and I’ve been away from home for a long time and I am ready for it to start, really.

This race has been the primary goal that I set for myself in October of last year and I have been working towards it. In the end, I always want to do things in the best way and now that we are at the gates of the Tour, physically I feel good. I am very well prepared and above all I have a great eagerness to start. I hope that everything turns out in the best way and that I can be there ready for everything.

It is a very tough Tour route this year. From the first days in the Basque Country it will be complicated but I also really like some of the stages. We are bringing a team that can get a nice result and that’s what we’re hoping for.

This is a team with a lot of experience. There are guys who have done several Grand Tours, who have a lot of experience and above all, they have a lot of talent. I think it’s going to be a team that’s going to be up to the task of meeting the objectives that we’ve set for ourselves. It’s going to be a nice adventure with them.

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