Swiss Cycling will be represented at next year’s Tour de Suisse with a selection of the national team.
Fabian Lienhard, Simon Pellaud and Patrick Schelling have two things in common. Firstly, the three riders wearing the jerseys of the national team contested the Tour de Romandie and/or the Tour de Suisse this year. Secondly, thanks in part to their performances with the Swiss Cross on the backs of professional teams, they have been contracted. Lienhard, Pellaud and Schelling used the stage provided by Swiss Cycling. “Three athletes have made the jump to the pros. This is far more than we expected. This development strengthens our resolve to compete with a national team in the two rounds up to the 2024 World Championships in Zurich,” says Sports Director Thomas Peter.
Behind the presence of the Swiss Cycling Team is a promotional measure in view of the World Championships in 2020 in Aigle-Martigny and 2024 in Zurich. It is based on the fact that there is no Pro Continental team in Switzerland; it is at this level that talent is introduced to the World Tour level. The core objective of the measure is to give aspiring Swiss people the chance to show themselves in the big shop window, to get used to the higher rhythm.
The first edition can generally be described as a success. The national team athletes thrilled the spectators with their offensive driving style. They were – because of the jersey – the only Swiss riders who could be identified beyond doubt as local participants by the mass audience at the roadside and on the screens. “Identification triggers emotions, and it is precisely these emotions that make sport live,” says Thomas Peter.
“It was great to see what the Swiss national team was able to achieve during the Tour de Suisse this summer. The young Swiss animated the race every day and presented the jersey of the national team from the best side.
I am sure we can look forward to a strong performance in 2020 as well.” the Tour de Suisse sporting director is convinced.
In 2020, Swiss Cycling will once again be competing with a national team at the Tour de Suisse (6th to 14th June); the responsible committee of the UCI has given its approval. All Swiss riders whose equipment does not participate in the respective round trip can be nominated for the national team. National road coach Marcello Albasini will be the sports director of the selection.