First East-African Victory at the Tour de Suisse

Eritrean cyclist Biniam Girmay (Intermarché – Circus – Wanty) took Stage 2 of the Tour de Suisse in Nottwil on Lake Sempach. Arnaud Demare and Wout van Aert make up the podium in the mass sprint of a tight peloton. Stefan Küng successfully defends the Leader Jersey. Stefan Küng successfully defends the Leader Jersey.

In an almost effortless manner, Biniam Girmay emerged from the slipstream of Wout van Aert, who had started the sprint of Stage 2 prematurely, about 150 metres from the finish. “I am honestly surprised with my victory”, Girmay admitted in the winner’s interview. “We worked a lot and that I was able to win makes me extremely happy. But I didn’t expect it.” He was quick to add that as there are many interesting stages to come as the Tour de Suisse continues throughout the week it is too early to celebrate. The overall classification remains unchanged. Despite a mass crash in the last hour of the race, the peloton finished together. Stefan Küng is the holder of the yellow Leader Jersey for at least one more day.

Michael Schär in the Breakaway

The peloton set off from Beromünster just after 1pm. The stage lead over 174 undulating kilometres around Lake Sempach. The narrow and winding roads increased the level of difficulty. On top of that conditions were windy. Soon after the start, two riders broke away. One of them was Michael Schär (AG2R Citroen Team), the local hero contesting his last Tour de Suisse and whose home village of Geuensee marked the halfway point of the stage. He was accompanied by Nickolas Zukowsky (Q36.5 Pro Cycling Team). Unfortunately the pair would not be in the running for the stage win. Their advantage was never more than 4:30 minutes. They were caught at the last KOM approximately 20 kilometres before the finish.

First Mountain Finish on Tuesday

The Tour de Suisse heads to western Switzerland on Tuesday and starts in the Fribourg town of Tafers. After a flat start the climbers will get to show off their talents for the first time. The Col des Mosses serves as a springboard for the final climb to Villars-sur-Ollon,. It is the first time that the Valais ski region is a Host City of the Tour de Suisse. The mountain village is regularly visited by the Tour de Romandie and is therefore a well-known location in the world of cycling.