Mollema hopes Cancellara recovers in time for Tour de Suisse

'We really, really need him in the Tour,' says Trek rider

Bauke Mollema will be crossing his fingers that his Trek Factory Racing teammate Fabian Cancellara can recover from a throat infection in time for the Tour de Suisse.

The race is scheduled to be Cancellara’s last major stage race outing before the Tour de France and after an already injury-hit season the Classics star is running out of time to find his best form.

Mollema, currently competing in the Critérium du Dauphiné, will lead Trek Factory Racing at this year’s Tour and is well aware of what Cancellara brings to the team.

"It’s really important he recovers and is in the team. He’s a big leader and a really important guy," Mollema told Cyclingnews at the start of stage 4 of the Dauphiné.

"I really hope that he can do the Tour de Suisse and that he recovers in time for the Tour de France. We really, really need him in the Tour for cobbles, the team time trial and for all his experience in the race."

On stage 3 of the Dauphiné, Trek limped home in 17th place and although they are not racing the Dauphiné with their full Tour de France line-up, Mollema will be looking for a much improved outing when the Tour de France moves into team time trial mode in July.

"We’re not here with the Tour de France team. Teams like BMC and Astana have almost their entire Tour teams where while we miss Cancellara, Jungles, maybe our best two time triallists."

Mollema is making his Dauphiné debut this year having previously used the Tour de Suisse as his final Tour de France preparation race. He moved to Trek at the start of the season and has quietly built up his form ahead of July. After Tuesday's team time trial he admitted that the overall challenge at the Dauphiné had become secondary to other ambitions.

"So far we’ve had just flat stages but yesterday we did a pretty bad team time trial. We started the first climb too fast and ended up losing three guys after five kilometres. You know that from that point on it’s going to be hard," he told Cyclingnews.

“It’s going to be a hard week. The most important thing is to find my form a bit more. I’m not especially focused on GC, especially after yesterday’s stage but I hope to hope something by going for a stage. I need this race to make the last step before the Tour. After this I’ll head back to altitude for more training.

"My schedule has been a bit different this year because in previous years I’ve done Tour de Suisse, so this is my first time here. Last two years I was good in Suisse with second and third. Maybe I was a bit too good in that race because in the last week of the Tour I had some difficulties. The plan here is to stay under the radar because it’s still five or six weeks until the end of the Tour. I’m on schedule."

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