Chris Froome to be supported by Geraint Thomas at Tour de France

Chris Froome will again be supported by the Welshman Geraint Thomas when he launches his attempt to win a third Tour de France title this summer.

The pair will be joined by two other Britons in the Sky team, Ian Stannard and Luke Rowe, when the 103rd edition of the race starts at Mont Saint-Michel on Saturday 2 July and concludes on Sunday 24 July in Paris.

Froome, racing off a third victory in the Critérium du Dauphiné, an event he won ahead of his two previous Tour triumphs in 2013 and 2015, said: “I feel in good shape coming into the race this year and am fortunate to have a strong team around me – both on and off the bike.

“Every rider obviously starts every new Tour equal and what has gone before counts for nothing. This year I am hungrier than ever for success.

“We know how hard this race will be and how much we will have to give if we want to win it again. But we have trained hard. We’re ready for the challenge and can’t wait to get back racing in front of the millions of people in France who make the race so special.”

Thomas, who finished 15th overall last year, took part in the Tour of Switzerland this month but his hopes of a top-10 finish were ended on the final day where he was affected by the cold weather and dropped to an eventual 17th.

The team principal, Sir Dave Brailsford, said: “Every Tour is different, so that means choosing the team we believe is best equipped to deal with the many different challenges of this race.

“We have selected a talented group of riders with Chris as the leader once again. I know they will do everything they can to help him try to win yellow.

“We can take a lot of confidence as a team from what we have achieved already this year, but we know how much it takes to win the Tour.

“Of course there are a number of riders in other teams capable of putting in a challenge for overall victory. That’s great news for cycling fans, who can look forward to seeing some really competitive racing.

“We are as excited as the fans about what’s to come and we’re looking forward to getting started next Saturday.”

Team Sky

Chris Froome, Sergio Henao, Vasil Kiryienka, Mikel Landa, Mikel Nieve, Wout Poels, Luke Rowe, Ian Stannard, Geraint Thomas.

Powered by article was written by Guardian sport, for The Guardian on Wednesday 22nd June 2016 13.25 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010