MOUILLERON-LE-CAPTIF, France – Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme urges fans to "keep both feet on the ground" when four-time champion Chris Froome rides by.
Freshly cleared of doping, the rider for Team Sky, a British professional cycling team, was booed by the crowd at the Tour teams presentation on Thursday. The race starts Saturday in the Vendee region.
Froome is aiming to join Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Miguel Indurain as the only riders to win the Tour five times.
"We need to tell the people whistling that it is stupid and that it is useless," Prudhomme said. "I'm calling for serenity. I want to see people encouraging their champion with both feet on the road, keeping quiet when [riders] they don't like ride past them."
A cloud hung over Froome after a urine sample taken during the Spanish Vuelta in September showed a concentration of the asthma drug salbutamol twice above the permitted level.
The Tour informed Froome he wasn't welcome until UCI, the world governing body for sports cycling, announced on Monday that Froome's result did not represent an adverse finding on advice from the World Anti-Doping Agency.