Tom Pidcock and Connor Swift of Yorkshire will participate in the Tour de France this summer

Pidcock will make his big race debut as part of the eight-man Ineos Grenadiers squad tasked with trying to reclaim the yellow jersey that at some point in the last decade they never seemed to give up.

The honor for Pidcock only comes in his second year in the professional road racing peloton, a period in which the 22-year-old from Leeds demonstrated his versatility as a cyclist by winning gold in the the Olympic mountain bike race in Tokyo last August and the rainbow jersey at the cyclo-cross world championships in the United States in America.

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Pidcock’s main objective as the Tour moves through Denmark and then its traditional heartland of France is to help team leader Geraint Thomas fight for the overall victory he claimed in 2018.

A year later, Egan Bernal won it again for the Sky/Ineos machine, their seventh victory in eight years, but the last two belonged to Slovenian prodigy Tadej Pogacar of UAE Team Emirates, who will walk away as heavy favorites.

The second Yorkshireman to descend the ramp for Friday’s opening 13.1km time trial is Connor Swift, the 26-year-old former British road race champion from Doncaster who is racing in the Tour de France for the third consecutive year.

Swift will once again play a supporting role for her French team Arkea Samsic. He has recorded two top-20 finishes during his Tour de France career.

Two Yorkshiremen in the race is something to behold, as not too long ago – even in 2014 when the Grand Depart arrived in Yorkshire – there were just four British riders in the entire race.

TOM PIDCOCK: The Olympic mountain bike champion from Leeds will race the Tour de France this summer. Photo: Getty Images.

There are seven in this year’s edition, which ends in Paris on Sunday July 24, including four-time winner Chris Froome for Israel Premier Tech and a quartet at Ineos – Pidcock, Thomas, Luke Rowe and Adam Yates.

Pidcock is only entering his second career Grand Tour less than two weeks after contracting Covid-19, which forced him to withdraw from the Tour de Suisse.

Yates, 29, also pulled out of this race with the virus but joins Thomas, Dani Martinez, time trial specialist Filippo Ganna, Jonathan Castroviejo and Dylan van Baarle.

CONNOR SWIFT: Will also be at the Tour de France this summer. Photo: Getty Images.

About Walter J. Leslie

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