Defending Tour de France winner says "things are coming together"
Cadel Evans had been hopeful of a strong performance as defending champion at the Tour of Romandie, but had to settle for 29th overall, 2:07 back on the time of winner, Brad Wiggins (Sky).
The 35-year-old Australian has been in recovery mode following a sinus infection however, was looking to stamp his authority on the toughest stages in Switzerland.
"It's been an interesting course – hard yet not selective," he said following Sunday's final stage. "The hard climbs have been a little distance from the finish which allows groups to come back and were finishing in a not-so-small group every day and a lot of riders were on the same time."
Heading into the decisive final stage time trial, Evans had been just 30 seconds back on the lead of Luis Leon Sanchez (Rabobank) with Wiggins poised for victory in second place, nine seconds in arrears of the Spaniard.
Interestingly it was not Evans who finished best of the BMC squad on Sunday, but Johann Tschopp who was 1:29 back stage winner Wiggins, with Evans at 1:45 on the uphill time trial.
"With a time trial like this, I was just guessing after I rode the course this morning, we'd have time gaps something like you'd have on an l'Alpe d'Huez time trial," he continued. "So we had close racing all week and then we come to a selective time trial in the final [stage] which made for an interesting last day."
Evans dropped out of Amstel Gold Race earlier this month, and then did not participate in the remaining Ardennes Classics as planned in a bid to recover in time for Romandie with the Tour de France and then the Olympics his prime objectives for the season.
"I'm sorry I didn't have a bit more strength to put on the course and to put on the results sheet but we'll see what my ride does for today," he said.
"When you come here with the number one on your back, like I came here to Romandie, you come to win here. Unfortunately, things haven't been going so well for me this year for reasons a little bit beyond my control. But now things are coming together, which – going toward July and August – is probably more and more important for my year overall.
"I would have liked to have done more to be honest..."
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