fi’zi:k’s Quintana wins Tour De Romandie

"There is a myth about winning Romandie and going on to win the Tour – I hope that legend is true"

Nairo Quintana, competing for Movistar and powered by his fi’zi:k Antares saddle, continued his superb early season form with victory on Sunday at the Tour de Romandie. It added further weight behind the 26-year-old Colombian’s push to become the first South American to win this July’s Tour de France. Quintana finished the Swiss race 19 seconds clear of Thibaut Pinot (FDJ and Arione R1) and a further 4 seconds ahead of Movistar teammate Jon Izaguirre (fi’zi:k Aliante).

‘There is a myth about winning Romandie and going on to win the Tour – I hope that legend is true, so we can make the “Yellow Dream” become real,’ Quintana said after Sunday’s final stage, alluding to the Romandie winner going on to win the Tour in three of the past five editions. ‘The Romandie win gives us confidence and calmness,’ Quintana continued, ‘and the whole group is strong so, no matter who we bring to the Tour, we’ll be well protected.’

Quintana headed into the final 172km stage from Ollon to Geneva 19 seconds ahead of Pinot, after fending off a series of attacks from the Frenchman the previous day. The competition wouldn’t make it easy for the Colombian. Neither would the weather as rain kept riders company for much of the final day. Thankfully, Quintana remained upright on the soaked roads – unlike Izaguirre, who crashed in the final kilometre. It didn’t harm Izaguirre’s third overall, though his injuries were such that he had to miss the medal ceremony.

While Quintana finished safely in the pack, the stage win went to Michael Albasini (Orica-GreenEDGE and fi’zi:k Arione), the 35-year-old Swiss rider overhauling BMC Racing’s young rider Tom Bohli (fi’zi:k saddles) with less than 100m to go.

Elsewhere, Team Sky’s Nicolas Roche (fi’zi:k Antares) finished second overall behind Thomas Voeckler at the Tour de Yorkshire with Adam Yates (Orica-GreenEDGE and fi’zi:k Antares) in fourth.