Dan Martin confirmed for Israel Start-Up Nation’s 2021 Tour de France squad | Cycling Weekly

Dan Martin has been announced as the next man on the team for Israel Start-Up Nation at the 2021 Tour de France.

This will be Martin’s second Grand Tour of the season after putting in a strong performance at the Giro d’Italia where he took a stage win and 10th overall.

The Irish rider will be a vital rider for the team’s leader, Michael Woods, who comes into the Tour in fine form in the mountains with multiple top results. Four-time winner Chris Froome has already been announced as road captain for the squad.

In a team press release, Martin said: “With the right balance of training and recovery, I think having done the Giro can be beneficial, rather than a disadvantage.

“Together with Paulo Saldanha from PowerWatts, I feel like we found that right balance very well.

“I took training a little bit easier after the Giro, and I have done more intensity over the last few bits of training. I feel recovered and ready to race,”

It was all going very well for Martin at the Giro, he looked to have very solid form and was in the fight for the overall until the race reached the gravel roads of Tuscany when he lost a huge amount of time to Egan Bernal (Ineos Grenadiers) and co. He managed a good race after that and got into the top 10 in the end as well as taking stage 17 up to Sega di Ala.

Martin, who has won a stage in all three Grand Tours, will be eyeing one particular stage where he has finished in first and second in the past, that is stage two on the Mûr de Bretagne.

“Racing my ninth Tour de France is something I was planning from the beginning of the season and I am happy that I am racing it, especially as it brings me back to the Mûr,” Martin said.

However, Martin will come up against some of the best punchers on the planet with the likes of world champion, Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck – Quick-Step) and Grand Tour debutant Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix), who are both searching for stage wins.

Two time Monument winner, Martin has taken two stage wins at the Tour; one in 2018 on the Mûr and another on a medium mountain stage to Bagnéres de Bigorre back in 2013, where now team-mate Chris Froome took his first Tour overall victory.

Martin joins a squad that includes four-time winner, Froome, who comes back to the race for the first time in two year’s after his horrendous crash at the Critérium du Dauphiné in 2019 where he broke multiple bones.

Along with Froome and Woods, Israel Start-Up Nation have also announced Israeli champion, Omer Goldstein who will be looking for breakaway opportunities. The rest of the team is not yet known but riders such as Sep Vanmarke, Daryl Impey, Patrick Bevin and Rudy Barbier and many more are available to make a well-rounded team.