Evenepoel after solo victory at Tour de Suisse: 'Best way to honour Gino'

Remco Evenepoel won the first stage of the Tour of Switzerland on Saturday following the death of Swiss rider Gino Mäder. "I thought it was the best way to honour Gino," he said.

"The race was more or less neutralised until 25 km from the finish when the classification times were taken. From then on, everyone was free to race," said Evenepoel, the world champion.

"Even though the situation is tough for everyone, I am not the type to give up. I wanted to make the best of it and see what I could do. I thought it was the best way to honour Gino," he said. "The last 15 kilometres were not easy, but when I got to the main road with 2 km to go, I could relax and let the emotions sink in." Wout van Aert was second and Bryan Coquard third.

The entire peloton is still reeling from the death of Mäder. The 26-year-old suffered a severe crash on Thursday and had to be resuscitated. He died the following day in the hospital in Chur.

On the eve of the final 25.7 km time trial, Evenepoel, fourth in the general classification, is 46 seconds behind Danish leader Mattias Skjelmose. "I think it will be difficult to knock him off the leader's jersey," said Evenepoel. "I'm going to give everything, try to win the stage and then we'll see the result."



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