[Underneath article was written before the start of the Tour de Romandie and has not been updated]
The Tour de Romandie used to be the last big test ahead of the Giro d’Italia, but there are zero GC riders who opt for the Tour de Romandie/Giro double this year. Most Giro contenders were active on the last week’s Tour of the Alps. Simon Yates boosted his confidence with a commanding victory.
The Tour de Romandie kicks into gear with a prologue, which will surely open up time gaps, but in terms of the GC battle it will come down to the the last two days of action. Saturday’s Queen Stage takes in three intermediate climbs before the finish climb is a 20 kilometres long monster, while a trying ITT takes place on Sunday. The route will be pepped up by two short and sharp climbs, one of which is cobbled.
Three lumpy races round out the route. Interesting in itself, but GC riders will want to keep their powder dry for the final weekend.
Still active riders who won the Tour de Romandie are Primoz Roglic (2018, 2019) Richie Porte (2017), Nairo Quintana (2016), Ilnur Zakarin (2016), Chris Froome (2013, 2014), and Roman Kreuziger (2009). Only Porte and Froome will line-up at the start of the 2021 edition.
Favourites Tour de Romandie 2021
*** Wilco Kelderman, Ion Izagirre, Richie Porte
** Lennard Kämna, Steven Kruijswijk, Geraint Thomas
* Miguel Ángel López, Michael Woods, Jack Haig, Tejay van Garderen