The BMC Racing team have named what they suggest is 'one of the strongest teams' they have ever taken to a stage race for the Tour de Suisse, with Richie Porte, Tejay van Garderen and Greg Van Avermaet all in the seven-rider roster for the important pre-Tour de France stage race.
Also in the squad for the nine-day race are Alessandro De Marchi, Simon Gerrans, Stefan Kung and Michael Schär.
Porte recently became a father but is looking forward to making his debut at the Tour de Suisse after opting for the nine-day race as his final block of racing before the Tour de France. Porte will face Nairo Quintana and Mikel Landa (Movistar), Jakob Fuglsang (Astana) and Bauke Mollema (Trek-Segafredo), with Peter Sagan (Bora-Hansgrohe) using the Swiss race to polish his form for the Tour de France.
“I’m excited to race Tour de Suisse for the first time. This year, with the change in calendar, the Tour de Suisse was a good fit for my Tour de France preparation and I think the nine stages will give us a good indication of my form. I like the look of the race and I think the team time trial will be a good way to get things started,” Porte said, when BMC confirmed its line-up.
“I’m feeling good and have put a few solid weeks of training in since Tour de Romandie, so I hope to continue my good results in Switzerland. We definitely have one of the strongest teams so I’m looking forward to what I’m sure will be an aggressive race, and hope to come out of it with a lot of confidence before we turn our attention to the Tour de France.”
BMC Racing will target overall success with Porte and the opening 18km team time trial in Frauenfeld.
“The Tour de Suisse is a very important race for BMC Racing Team and this year, we are lining up with one of the strongest teams we have ever taken to a stage race. The race serves as the final preparation before the Tour de France so we will naturally be supporting Richie Porte for the General Classification,” directeur sportif Fabio Baldato explained.
“Richie is motivated and has been training well since the Tour de Romandie so we are looking forward to seeing how he goes. We know that Tejay van Garderen is in good shape after California, as is Alessandro De Marchi, who is coming from the Giro d’Italia, and Simon Gerrans, who showed good form at Hammer Limburg, so these three riders will be there to support Richie on the key general classification days.
“We are always motivated to do well when there is a team time trial, especially when it comes on the opening day so I expect a strong performance from the team on Saturday. Of course our Swiss riders, Michael Schär and Stefan Küng, always want to perform well on home soil and the individual time trial is also a good opportunity for Stefan. Greg Van Avermaet showed he is racing well at the Hammer Series and I think there are a couple of stages suited to Greg. So, I think we have multiple cards to play over the nine days to finish with a nice result before the Tour de France.”
Cyclingnews will have live coverage of every stage of the Tour de Suisse with Editor-in-Chief Daniel Benson in Switzerland to capture exclusive news and interviews from the race.
BMC Racing for the Tour de Suisse: Alessandro De Marchi, Simon Gerrans, Stefan Kung, Richie Porte, Michael Schär, Greg Van Avermaet and Tejay van Garderen (USA).
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