What's Cool In Road Cycling

Grand Prix of Aargau Canton

Simon Pellaud: “I have very good memories of Gippingen”

THE STATEMENT: Simon Pellaud, who comes from the Valais in the French part of Switzerland, has already been at the start line of the GP of Canton Aargau the past two years. But his best memories of the course date back to June 8, 2013, when as a 20 year old, he won the Swiss U23 Championships, which were held in Gippingen. “That was a perfect day for me,” Pellaud said. “I willingly come to this race in Gippingen every year with those memories in the back of my head. And I am motivated again to be at the start of the event. We come with an interesting team to the Aargau, and personally, I will probably choose to try to get into the breakaway. That’s a tactic that has proved to work well in Gippingen. Of course this race is of particular importance to me since it is a Swiss race and members of my family will be cheering us on at the side of the road. In the past four weeks, I have had a few good performances, which has not always been the case this season. This will definitely be a tough race, because the many rounds on the challenging course will make this a race of elimination.”

THE GOAL: “We want to be present and strong in every phase of this race,” directeur sportif Marcello Albasini explained. “That means that we will be going in the breakaways, and then make an impact in the final, where the victory will be decided. The GP of Canton Aargau is a Swiss race, and for us as a Swiss team, it is very important that we deliver a strong performance in Gippingen. We will be present and active, and in order to achieve that, we have brought a strong team to the race. Since it is a home event, we would love to excel with a Swiss rider. One possibility could be Martin Elmiger. He is in good shape, highly motivated, and could very well figure in the final. And with Roger Kluge, we also have an excellent lead out rider who could play an important role in the final preparation for a sprint finish.”

THE CHANGE: On account of a building site in Gippingen, the start/finish area of the race has been moved by about a kilometer. That is a change that could impact the whole complexion of the event. “After the route change, we have a longer stretch between the last climb and the finish line,” Albasini said. “That will increase the chances of a field sprint for the victory, though a breakaway group could also carry through to the end. In either case, there certainly should be a sprint. For the final 500 meters, there is a slight uphill.”

THE MEMORY: Simon Pellaud is not the only IAM Cycling rider in Gippingen to have tasted victory there. As already mentioned, Pellaud became U23 Swiss champion in the town, while Martin Elmiger took the 2003 edition of the GP of Canton Aargau having won a sprint out of a seven man breakaway group and ahead of Italian Paolo Bettini.

Martin Elmiger (S)
Roger Kluge (All)
Pirmin Lang (S)
Jarlinson Pantano (Col)
Simon Pellaud (S)
Vegard Stake Laengen (Nor)
David Tanner (Aus)
Larry Warbasse (USA).

Directeur sportif: Marcello Albasini.


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