Lotte Kopecky (Team SD Worx) was nothing short of incredible at this year’s Tour de France Femmes avec Zwift, taking the opening stage win, green jersey and second overall after finishing in the top six of all but one stage. So, will she even line up at the 2024 edition of the race?
The road race World Champion was present at the Tour de France Femmes route reveal in Paris, but is having doubts about her participation due to the proximity to the Olympic Games. The women’s Tour de France, August 12-18, will begin after the Paris Olympic Games, but the track competitions at the National Velodrome conclude on August 11. The women’s road race at the Paris Games is August 4.
Kopecky has won six gold medals across four UCI Track Cycling World Championships but medals from the Olympic Games, on the track or on the road, have been elusive so far. Her best result was fourth at the road race in Tokyo.
“There is currently no clarity about participation in the Tour and I will only make that decision very late. I have already discussed it with Danny Stam [SD Worx Sports Manager],” said Kopecky to Het Nieuwsblad after the eight stages were unveiled.
“We will first focus on the spring and only afterwards will we see whether riding the Tour is possible. Dropping the omnium on the track is not an option anyway.”
The women’s omnium at Paris 2024 concludes with the last of its four events, the points race, on Sunday, August 11, while the opening stage of the Tour de France Femme gets going from Rotterdam on August 12 with a flat 124km stage to The Hague. She is the reigning women’s omnium champion for Belgium.
Even the race heading to Belgium isn’t certain to persuade Kopecky to guarantee her place on the start line at the Grand Départ in Rotterdam.
“When I see the course, I definitely want to ride. The fact that it goes through Belgium is also a very nice thing. On the other hand, the Tour is every year while the Olympic Games are only once every four years. There are also very nice goals coming up after the Tour, so it is very unclear at the moment,” said Kopecky.
“The switch from track to road is not a problem in itself, that is not my biggest fear. The Tour in itself is simply very tough and after such an omnium you have not only been physically very deep, but also mentally. That is something we have to look at carefully after the classics.”
Kopecky will of course want to show off her rainbow jersey at the Tour, and it would be strange to see the…