Nicolas Roche back on track after confidence-boosting Suisse ride

Posted on: June 24th, 2019

Nicolas Roche said his Team Sunweb squad got behind him during the Tour de Suisse, especially on yesterdays final stage.

Nicolas Roche has taken his best general classification result of the season and looks to be putting behind him a more challenging season in 2018.

While he put together some good rides last year – 10th at the Tour of Turkey, 4th in the Arctic Race of Norway and 4th at the Japan Cup – he also abandoned a Grand Tour for the first time.

But with the Tour de France fast-approaching and with his Team Sunweb intended leader for that event, Tom Dumoulin, ruled out of it with injury, Roche is coming into solid form at the right time.

He was team leader at Tour de Suisse and was 10th overall in the final general classification when the race ended yesterday.

It concluded with a 101km stage 9, finishing in Goms after three HC climbs, the last one followed by 23.5km to the finish, about half of it downhill.

Roche said when he got it hard up the final climb his team mates were there to pace him.

That ensured he retained his 10th place overall; a result he was happy with.

A great shot of Hugh Carthy climbing into the snow line. He really took the bull by the horns, going on a 90km breakaway to take a brilliant win
Egan Bernal in yellow in the group before he and Dennis rode away after Carthy
Hugh Carthy celebrates his win at the Tour de Suisse on the ninth and final stage

“Today was a really tough day once again,” Nicolas Roche said after yesterday’s final day of action.

“The team did really good work for me; especially in the second part of the race with Søren and Wilco looking after me in the key moments.

“On the last climb when I struggled a bit Wilco made sure to keep the tempo and keep me in reach.

“It has been a great week and I’ve had great support; I’m happy to have finished in the top 10 at this Tour de Suisse.”

The final stage was won by Hugh Carthy (EF Education First); the young British rider going on a 90km attack.

Behind him, yellow jersey Egan Bernal (Team Ineos) and Rohan Dennis (Bahrain Merida) raced each other for the overall crown and finished together some 1:03 behind the lone winner.

It meant the overall title went to Bernal, though Dennis climbed very well during yesterdays stage.

Roche was 12th on the day, finishing in a small group some 3:07 down. That saw him retain 10th overall, some 5:27 off winner Bernal.