News | Team June 24, 2024

Pogačar’s Path: The Road to the 2024 Tour de France

This year, Tadej Pogačar aims to etch his name further into cycling history as he sets his sights on becoming the 8th person ever to complete the Giro d’Italia – Tour de France double. As we trace Pogačar’s journey to the 2024 Tour de France, the season has already proven to be extraordinary.


The year began with the renowned classics season. Strade Bianche was first up for Pogačar, and he made his intentions clear pre-race. Monte Santa Maria would be the place to attack. A demanding 11.9km climb with a maximum gradient of 18% over gravelled roads with 81km of racing left – a solo attack would seem audacious for anyone but Pogačar. True to his work, he unleased a relentless assault on his opponents, leaving the race behind him as the fans were treated to another Tadej Pogačar masterclass. Victory in Strade Bianche marked his first triumph of the season, celebrated by hoisting his bike above his head – a scene cycling fans across the world would see repeated throughout the year.


Transitioning to the Volta Ciclista a Catalunya, Pogačar was ready to fine-tune his stage racing fitness for the upcoming Grand Tours. His form from Strade Bianche translated seamlessly, highlighted by a commanding win atop Vallter 2000 during stage 2. With visibility in the mountains non-existent – Pogačar appeared through the clouds with the peloton in his wake, grabbing the leader’s jersey with both hands. Pogačar’s dominance became insurmountable as he clinched the overall classification, as well as the points and mountains classifications, with three additional stage victories rounding off a strong first stage race of the season.


Liege-Bastogne-Liege was next, a race that holds mixed memories for Pogačar. Having had to withdraw or abandon in the last two seasons, Pogačar returned to Liege emotional charged and ready to fight for victory. Sticking to the team’s plan, he attacked on the Côte de le Redoute with 34 kilometres remaining. Like Strade Bianche, no one could follow. It was another solo journey to the finish line, beating his nearest competitor Romain Bardet by 1 minute and 39 seconds. A visibly emotional Pogačar had won his second Liege-Bastogne-Liege, embracing his team at the finish line, marking his sixth monument win and further solidifying himself as one of the cycling greats.


The Giro d’Italia saw Pogačar further solidify his name into Grand Tour history once again. Six stage wins, 20 days in pink, and a staggering winning margin of 9 minutes and 56 seconds cemented his dominance over three weeks of intense competition. Pogačar’s intentions were clear after his attack on Stage 1—he was going to seize every opportunity at the Giro. His first of six wins came on day 2, as Pogačar conquered the mountain finish of Santuario di Oropa. Further control followed with a Time Trial victory on Stage 7, where he outpaced the experienced Italian Time Trial Champion Filippo Ganna by 16 seconds. Pogačar reinforced this triumph with another win on Stage 8 before showcasing his stellar form once again with back-to-back victories on Stages 15 and 16. UAE Team Emirates fans eagerly anticipated the next vintage Pogačar performance on Stage 20, an arduous day featuring a double ascent of the famed Monte Grappa—18 km at an average gradient of 8.1%, twice over. Donned in pink from head to toe, riding his pink Colnago bike, Pogačar asserted his superiority once more, leaving his challengers behind to win the penultimate stage by a staggering 2 minutes and 7 seconds. As the team headed to Rome, they did so as Giro d’Italia winners, leaving fans with memories of one of the most commanding Grand Tour performances of all time.


As Pogačar now focuses on the Tour de France, he knows he’s not alone in his quest for greatness. He is joined by Adam Yates as his ‘right hand’ as well as Juan Ayuso and Joao Almeida providing further help in the mountains. Marc Soler and Pavel Sivakov will provide the help on all types of terrain, with Tim Wellens and Nils Pollitt rounding out an all-star lineup. It is a team that has proven its mettle time and again, ready to support Pogačar through the challenges that the Tour de France will throw at him. The 2024 Tour de France promises to be a thrilling spectacle, with Pogačar at the center of the action. His journey from the start of the season to now has been remarkable. As he lines up for the Grand Départ, the cycling world will watch with bated breath. Can Pogačar achieve the historic Giro-Tour double? Only time will tell, but one thing is certain: Tadej Pogačar and UAE Team Emirates are ready to give it their all.