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Team Ineos could replace Egan Bernal with Richard Carapaz at Tour de France

Joe Robinson
18 Aug 2020

Worries begin to mount over Bernal's back injury sustained at the Criterium du Dauphine

Giro d'Italia champion Richard Carapaz could be drafted into Team Ineos's Tour de France line up as concerns around Egan Bernal's back injury mount.

Carapaz was scheduled to head to the Giro to defend his title in October but reports in Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport are suggesting he may be brought into the Tour team as doubts grow around Bernal.

The Tour de France defending champion had to abandon the Criterium du Dauphine before the start of Stage 4 with the team later confirming the Colombian was suffering from a bad back.

While Bernal was reported to have trained over the weekend, it is uncertain whether he will be able to return to full fitness before the start of the Tour starts in Nice on Saturday 29th August.

Furthermore, team manager Dave Brailsford is also having to consider the precarious situation around his trio of Tour leaders. While Bernal battles injury, Geraint Thomas and Chris Froome continue to wrestle with a lack of form.

Neither competed in the fight for the overall title at the Dauphine with them finishing 37th and 71st, 53 minutes and 1 hour 26 minutes behind, respectively.

Carapaz has restarted the 2020 racing season by finishing sixth overall at the Vuelta a Burgos before winning Stage 3 at the Tour of Poland. He abandoned the race two days later following a crash but resumed at Il Lombardia over the weekend and finished 13th.

What is now certain is that Team Ineos will not be naming their Tour de France team this week, as was previously planned, and will likely take it to the wire in order to determine the fitness and form of defending champion Bernal.