Chris Froome hit the summit of cycling this year when he won the sport’s most prestigious race – the Tour de France.
Born and raised in Kenya, Froome turned professional at the age of 22 and since 2008 rides under a British licence.
Euronews caught up with the cycling star in Monaco at the Sportel convention.
euronews: Your career path in cycling is unorthodox in the fact that you started late and you started in Africa.
Froome: ‘‘It really was difficult for me to get over to Europe. I had to learn a new language, find somewhere to live and start a new life in Italy when I first came over and it was all part of of the challenge to become a professional cyclist.’‘
euronews: How do you feel about being the winner of the 100th edition of the Tour de France?
Froome: ‘‘Winning the 100th edition of the Tour de France, this year’s Tour de France was a really amazing feeling. It was a great feeling of satisfaction, something I have worked really hard to achieve. To be able to achieve it, it is not often in sport that you work towards a goal and everything goes ok for you in the race and this year was that year for me when everything went alright.
28-year-old Froome is widely considered one of the best all-rounders in the peloton but when asked about where he thinks his true strength lies he said: ‘‘I am predominantly a climber but time trial is also something that I can do well in and I can take a lot of time from my rivals, so I think generally I am a good stage racer, good in the mountains and good in the time trials.
euronews: Is it your strategy to rarely come out of the saddle when climbing?
Froome: ‘‘It’s not a strategy, it is just the way I am, I think I feel most comfortable like, I have the most power, if I just hold the bike and stay in the saddle. I do stand up, but not as much as some of the other pure climbers.’‘
euronews: What are your targets for next year?
Froome: ‘‘Next year, again, I would like to target the Tour de France. For me this year winning the Tour has given me so much motivation, it has given me the passion I know I can win it. I know have the ability to go there and to be one of the big contenders in the Tour de France. So why change all that, I think it would make a lot of sense to me to go back there and try and repeat what I did there this year.’‘