Romain Bardet did not hide in his bus this Friday morning from Belfort. He had not necessarily planned to speak. But after his heavy failure the day before, and after talking to his teammates, the leader of AG2R has come to assume his failure and claim that there will be better days for him.
Julien Jurdie, your sports director, told us that you used the word "shame" this Friday morning during the briefing. The word seems strong …
ROMAIN BARDET. Yes. It's because I was not at the level when everyone had worked so hard. Here. I feel like I have been a spectator and have shown only that. Hot, the words can be strong but I am revenge because I am very dissatisfied with me.
What is your delay of more than two minutes on Geraint Thomas now changing?
It changes a lot of things. I was well below my hopes yesterday (Note: Thursday) and I'm not proud to have shown that face. At the time of starting this Friday, I am determined to change that and especially to go ahead and feel like an actor of this Tour de France. Yesterday, the legs did not respond as I wanted and it is not a good guarantee for me. I hope to quickly erase that.
What did you say to your teammates?
That I must be worthy of their trust and their work. We are here to aim for stage victories but also a good overall ranking. I have to do what I can do on the Tour, namely to run on instinct. There are only six stages of the Tour that have passed and all the high mountains are not there yet. I suffered a setback yesterday (Note: Thursday) and I fully assume all the consequences. I came for much more than that on the Tour. This is just beginning.