• Tour de France

Brailsford: Froome is our No. 1

ESPN staff
November 28, 2012
Chris Froome celebrates winning Stage 7 of this year's Tour © PA Photos

Chris Froome is set to move out of Bradley Wiggins' shadow next year after being named as Team Sky's leader for the 2013 Tour de France.

Froome was the perfect deputy for Wiggins this summer, setting the pace in the mountains and pushing hard in the time trials to set him up as the race's first British winner.

But having to taper his racing to accompany Wiggins at times frustrated the 27-year-old, none more so than on Stage 17 in the Pyrenees when Froome had to repeatedly wait for his team leader, sacrificing his shot at a second stage victory.

But Sky boss Dave Brailsford has said that he now sees Froome as his No. 1 chance of masterminding another British success in cycling's showpiece.

Instead Olympic champion Wiggins, who will be 33 when the Tour de France starts on June 29, will head up Sky's efforts at the Giro d'Italia in May.

Although Brailsford has outlined his leadership plans in two of next year's three Grand Tours, he admits that he is yet to rubber stamp them.

"We are just getting back into training now and need to do quite a bit of planning," Brailsford told the Daily Mirror.

"But it does look as though the plan going into next year, which has still not completely been signed off, is that the Tour of Italy would be a very good target for Bradley and leave Froomy then to focus on the Tour de France."

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