Sepp Kuss Is Prepared to Adapt If Jonas Vingegaard Misses Tour de France

78th tour of spain 2023 stage 17
Kuss Prepared to Adapt If Vingegaard Misses TourTim de Waele - Getty Images

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With Jonas Vingegaard’s participation in the 2024 Tour de France still uncertain due to recent injuries, his teammate Sepp Kuss finds himself in a potentially pivotal role for the Visma-Lease a Bike team. As Kuss co-leads the team at the Critérium du Dauphiné alongside American Matteo Jorgenson, he remains prepared to step up at the Tour.

Speculation regarding Vingegaard’s participation has been all over the place. But most cycling fans are hoping there will be another face-off between Vingegaard and UAE Team Emirates’ Tadej Pogačar. “[Vingegaard] was riding the bike quite soon after he left the hospital. If he is comfortable riding on the bike already like that, he can be in good shape,” said Pogačar on the Geraint Thomas Cycling Club Podcast.

Kuss is also hoping to stick with the team’s “plan A,” much like the past two years, where he helped Vingegaard secure the GC. And despite winning last year's Vuelta, the super-domestique maintains that winning the Tour de France is a completely different game.

“Of course, it would change a bit [his Tour status]. I would hope that Jonas could do the Tour; I think that gives us all a bigger purpose… For me, it’s easier there with Jonas than just on my own for sure. But if he isn’t there, then I’m ready to adapt, but then you have to adjust the expectations a bit,” Kuss told the media ahead of Stage 2 of Dauphiné.

The final decisions on the Tour de France team will be made on Sunday following the conclusion of Dauphiné.

Meanwhile, UAE Team Emirates just announced their 2024 Tour de France roster, which includes Pogačar’s right and left-hand men, Juan Ayuso and Adam Yates. With or without the defending Tour de France champion at the race, many are wondering whether UAE can be stopped.

Vingegaard is currently at an altitude camp in Tignes, France, along with Belgian teammate Wout van Aert. Both are making their comebacks from injury. Vingegaard was part of the massive Itzulia Basque Country crash, and Van Aert suffered a spring Classics-ruining crash at Dwars door Vlaanderen.

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