Sporting director Merijn Zeeman of Jumbo-Visma does not think that his exclusion in the Tour de France has influenced the time trial of Primoz Roglic.
The Slovenian leader lost the yellow leader's jersey to fellow countryman Tadej Pogacar on the penultimate day
Zeeman was put off course by the organization of the Tour de France on Thursday after a collision a day earlier with a commissioner of the UCI.
The director had let himself go verbally after the UCI member wanted to check Roglic's bike.
The bicycle was damaged.
The 41-year-old Zeeman was therefore not allowed to take place in the Jumbo-Visma following cars on Friday and Saturday and had to watch from the side at the remaining stages, including the all-deciding time trial.
"I was just with the team in the hotel. Mathieu Heijboer is always in the lead with Grischa Niermann on the day of the time trial, we worked very well together. It had no further influence", Zeeman said on Saturday evening in conversation with the
Primoz Roglic lost the lead in the general classification one day before Paris. (Photo: Pro Shots)
Primoz Roglic lost the lead in the general classification one day before Paris.
(Photo: Pro Shots)
'When I saw it go wrong, my stomach turned around'
Despite the exclusion of Zeeman, Jumbo-Visma seemed on its way to the overall victory in the Tour, but Roglic lost 1.56 minutes to Pogacar on Saturday in the closing time trial, which was 59 seconds too much.
"We are very sad that it slipped out of our hands. This group deserved it, but we did not make it. When I saw that things went wrong, my stomach turned. We thought the 57 second lead was enough margin. ", says Zeeman.
"We have hit an opponent (Pogacar, ed.) Who has outdone himself. Who does a fantastic job and was much better than we were. Despite finishing in the top five with three riders, he crushed us."
The Tour de France will end on Sunday with a traditional stage to the Champs-Élysées in Paris.
Tour day 21: Were Jumbo-Visma tactics disastrous for Roglic's overall victory?