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2013 Riders To Watch

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While Chris Froome is the favourite entering the 2013 Tour, there are a group of riders including a pair of former champions that will look to claim the Yellow Jersey.


Chris Froome
Chris Froome 2013 Team: Team Sky Age: 28
2012 Tour Result: 2nd Best Tour Result: 2nd (2012)
Notes: With defending champion Bradley Wiggins out of the tour due to injury, Froome, who finished second last year, will lead the charge on a very strong Team Sky. He was won four stage races already this season and is the odds on favourite to win this year.
 
Ryder Hesjedal
Ryder Hesjedal 2013 Team: Garmin-Sharp Age: 32
2012 Tour Result: DNF Best Tour Result: 6th (2010)
Notes: It's been a rough season for the Canadian, who was too ill to defend his 2012 Giro d'Italia title, and followed that up by crashing out of the Tour de Suisse. Hesjedal is on a very strong Garmin team that also features Dan Martin, who won the Tour of Catalonia this year, as well as stage winner David Millar. All three have general classification ambitions, so a good early start is imperative for the 32-year-old.
 
Alberto Contador
Alberto Contador 2013 Team: Saxo Tinkoff Age: 30
2012 Tour Result: Did Not Race Best Tour Result: 1st (2007, 2009)
Notes: 'El Pistolero' is a two-time defending champion, but hasn't raced in the Tour for the last two years, serving time for a drug suspension. At 30, he's still in his prime and he's shown in the past that he's always willing to push the pace when he sees an opening.
 
Cadel Evans
Cadel Evans 2013 Team: BMC Age: 36
2012 Tour Result: 7th Best Tour Result: 1st (2011)
Notes: Evans fell short in his attempted title defence in 2012, and was eventually passed in the general classification by his own teammate Tejay van Garderen. The 36-year-old said that he was ill last year and enters the Tour coming off a third place finish at the Giro d'Italia.
 
Tejay van Garderen
Tejay van Garderen 2013 Team: BMC Age: 24
2012 Tour Result: 5th Best Tour Result: 5th (2012
Notes: While van Garderen starts the Tour in a supporting role of Cadel Evans, his performance last season showed that the 24-year-old might be on the cusp of big things. Van Garderen is a good rider who can handle himself on both the climbs and the time trials.
 
Joaquim Rodriguez
Joaquim Rodriguez 2013 Team: Katusha Age: 34
2012 Tour Result: Did not race Best Tour Result: 7th (2010)
Notes: The 34-year-old Spaniard, who has told the media that he's running out of time to win the Tour, makes only his second appearance at the Tour. The Katusha team is built to highlight Rodriguez's strong climbing ability. He finished second to Ryder Hesjedal at last year's Giro d'Italia.
 
Thibaut Pinot
Joaquim Rodriguez 2013 Team: FDJ Age: 23
2012 Tour Result: 10th Best Tour Result: 10th (2010)
Notes: Pinot, who was the youngest rider in the Tour last year, shocked the field by winning the 8th stage of the race. The 23-year-old is a very good climber, but isn't as well rounded in the other disciplines as other contenders.


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