Mathias Frank «I would have signed up for a 4th place in the Tour de Romandie»

04 May 2014

IAM Cycling

What had been an uproarious crowd at La Maladière Stadium in Neuchâtel fell silent after an exciting day.  The 68th edition of the Tour of Romandie came to a successful end with the second victory in a row for Christopher Froome (Sky) by giving a dominating performance in the final stage individual time trial.  Even if the Englishman came away with the main spoils for a second year, the IAM Cycling team, which benefited from an invitation to the event by the organizers, proved its value to the tour with a glowing performance.

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Team leader Mathias Frank leaped into fourth place overall, missing the final podium by just 12 seconds.

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Johann Tschopp received the cheers of the crowd as the best climber throughout the Tour of Romandie.  And the entire team showed its strength by finishing second to Movistar in the team standings.

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Reviewing a performance like that, Michel Thétaz, founder of IAM Cycling and CEO of IAM Funds, spoke of his satisfaction over the past week.

“I could not be happier.  The team put its best face forward.  We really showed of what quality stuff we are made.  It’s too bad we were not super lucky during this time trial since among our riders we had a puncture (Reichenbach) and a chain derailment (Wyss).  But ending on the finish line in Neuchâtel with 4th overall for Frank and the climber’s jersey for Tschopp, we can now turn our attention to the main goal of the season: the Tour de France.”

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Having taken 10th place in a time trial, where the climb between Cornaux and Frochaux surprised many with its difficulty, Mathias Frank quickly recovered from the disappointment of missing the podium by a slim 12 seconds.

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“I was disappointed, it’s true.  I gave my everything to grab that third step on the podium.  But I did not find a good rhythm in the first few kilometers.  And that proved enough to cost me my goal.  I must also say that if someone had told me at the beginning of the race that I was going to come away with 4th place in this Tour of Romandie, I could have taken that happily.  The whole team including the staff really gave their maximum.  And that bodes well ahead of future races that we have scheduled.”

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Winner of the best climber’s jersey, Johann Tschopp also highlighted the excellent atmosphere that pervades the entire team led by Marcello Albasini and Rubens Bertogliati.  He could also look on the event with personal satisfaction.

“The satisfaction is profound having now finished this Romandie.  The team met their expectations and fulfilled our contract.  For my side, I am very happy to be able to be on the podium reserved for the best climber.  It is really a great victory for me to have my second World Tour climber’s jersey after having won one at last year’s Paris-Nice, but this is even better because it’s at home.  I found good feelings in my legs with the passing days.  I have forgotten my health concerns; I was able to prepare to the best of my abilities and it has paid off.  Most importantly, this has been good mentally, and I am looking forward to my next goals, in particular the Tour of Bavaria and the Tour of Switzerland.”

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