RUI COSTA - Tour de Suisse
June marks the return of Rui Costa to the competition in his beloved Tour de Suisse. After starting the year building good foundations with more than a dozen of Top 10 achieved in general classifications and stages, the Portuguese leader of the UAE Team Emirates is preparing to take on the ninth WorldTour race of the season, between 9th and 17th of June.
The 2013 World Champion faces once again the race he has won three consecutive times, an unprecedented achievement not only for the Portuguese cycling but also in the history of the Swiss race.
The years of 2012, 2013 and 2014 were a glory for Rui Costa in the Tour de Suisse, winning the overall classification of the three editions and also guaranteeing five stages in the arrivals to Liestal (Et7 in 2010), Verbier (Et1 in 2012), La Punt (Et7 in 2013), the Flumserberg ITT (Et9 in 2013) and the stage ending in Saas-Fee (Et9 in 2014). The 2016 and 2017 editions were both finished in the Top 10 overall, seventh and fifth respectively.
In the 82nd Tour de Suisse, nine stages will be played with a new 18 km team time trial in Frauenfeld marking the beginning of this edition, a return of the collective effort after several years of absence. It will have also two days in circuit, the second stage of 155 km in the sinuous terrain of Frauenfeld and the eighth stage of 123 km in Bellinzona.
The third stage presents a route remembering the classics, a total of 182 km starting in Oberstammheim and arriving in Gansingen. The fourth stage will have moderate difficulty, with 189 km from Gansingen to Gstaad, an arrival preceded by the 2nd category climb at Saanenmöser, 17.3 km from the finish line.
The days of true mountain will not be missed, with the queen-stage appearing on the sixth day, in a total of 186 km from Fiesch and facing two of the most famous climbs of the Alps, the HC categories of Furkapass, at km 39.5, and Klausenpass, at km 118.8, which precedes the arrival in the 3rd category of Gommiswald.
There are also two mountaintop finishes, with the first to appear in the fifth stage, consisting of 155 km from Gstaad, passing through the 1st category of Col du Pilon, at km 15.7, the HC of Montana Village, at km 120, and ending in the 1st category of Leukerbad. In the seventh stage will be ride 170 km, starting from Eschenbach / Atzmännig and finishing at the HC of Arosa.
The 2018 edition of the Tour de Suisse will end with a decisive 34 km individual time trial on the fast terrain of Bellinzona.
Quotes by Rui Costa:
“I'm not a rider who likes to make promises. I prefer caution, to arrive and to do, than to promise results. Unfortunately, I am still injured and undergoing physiotherapy due to two bursitis and one tendinitis. I started training this week, I hope to be in a good shape in Switzerland and improve stage by stage.”
Stages Tour de Suisse 2018:
9/June, Stage 1 – Frauenfeld / Frauenfeld (TTT 18 km)
10/ June, Stage 2 – Frauenfeld / Frauenfeld (155 km)
11/ June, Stage 3 – Oberstammheim / Gansingen (182 km)
12/ June, Stage 4 – Gansingen / Gstaad (189 km)
13/ June, Stage 5 – Gstaad / Leukerbad (155 km)
14/ June, Stage 6 – Fiesch / Gommiswald (186 km)
15/ June, Stage 7 – Eschenbach. Atzmännig / Arosa (170 km)
16/ June, Stage 8 – Bellinzona / Bellinzona (123 km)
17/ June, Stage 9 – Bellinzona / Bellinzona (ITT 34 km)
Oficial website Tour de Suisse:
Written by Helena Dias