“There are very good French riders, who are able to do great things, but it seems to me that none has all the qualities to win the Tour in the future,” Péraud told Cyclingnews. “I hope I’m wrong but I think there is no French rider complete enough to be able to win the Tour.”
France's best hopes are his team mate Romain Bardet, alongside Thibaut Pinot and Pierre Rolland, he says.
No French rider has won the Tour de France for the last 28 years. Bernard Hinault took the last one, as he took his fifth titles, in 1985. Since then, French riders have finished on the podium only five times.
Péraud finished tenth at his first Tour in 2011, after finishing sixth in the final time trial. It seemed like he could do even better this year, but he crashed out on the mountain time trial just days before the race reached Paris. He had already crashed one time earlier that day, but after the second crash, he abandoned.
“I had decided not to leave after my first fall, when I fractured my collarbone. I was in a good position, and it would have been nice to finish and get a better placing. I knew that finishing the race would be complicated and painful,” said the Frenchman. “My second crash was in a sense a bit of a relief. The story was finished, that was clear.”