Tour de France leader Chris Froome believes there has been a palpable shift in the public’s perception of him following his decision to publicise results of physiological testing towards the end of last year.
Team Sky rider Froome is a two-time Tour winner and during his victories in 2013 and 2015 he had to contend with consistent allegations of doping.
The 31-year-old holds a one minute and 47 second lead after 16 stages of this year’s edition and insists the decision to release his data, together with his riding style this year, has won over the sceptics.
“I definitely feel as if there has been a huge shift this year,” said Froome.
“At the end of last season, I basically offered myself up for independent testing and went and did a whole load of physiological testing and released that data to the public, and I feel as if that has helped things quite a lot.
“And I think also how I have ridden the race this year, I haven’t just ridden away from everyone on the climbs. I have attacked on descents and I have attacked in the crosswinds.”
Only five stages of this year’s contest remain, with four back-to-back mountain days in the Alps starting today, followed by the processional finale in Paris on Sunday.