Luckless Tasmanian cyclist Richie Porte will pick himself up from another heartbreaking Tour de France crash by leading his country at next month’s UCI world road championships.
The 33-year-old crashed out on the Tour’s ninth stage for the second year running last month, resulting in a broken collarbone and another lost opportunity to win the world’s biggest bike race.
But the Hadspen rider is making a steady recovery and will race in the Vuelta a Espana later this month before fronting Australia’s eight-man road team in Innsbruck, Austria.
“Two days after I got home from my crash I got a text off [national selector Brad McGee] to say ‘commiserations, but now let’s have a go at worlds’, which was good for me to have that little bit of motivation in the back of the mind,” Porte told CylingTips.
“It’s a great silver lining — go to the Vuelta and prepare for a once-in-a-career worlds, really.
“They don’t come around like this very often.”
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Porte, who has been tipped to leave BMC for Trek-Segafredo at the season’s conclusion, will be joined on the Australian team by BMC teammate Rohan Dennis and Education First–Drapac rider Simon Clarke, as well as Jack Haig, Chris Hamilton, Damien Howson, Robert Power and Rory Sutherland.
Australian performance director Simon Jones said the Porte-led outfit had a good chance of success at the September 23-30 championships.
“The team has developed the best possible strategy and the selections were made to support the key objective of maximising the chances of winning,” Jones said.
“From a selection process perspective, we have moved to an earlier selection timeframe to give all athletes time to prepare and think about their roles and where applicable do specific work.”