“I have big plans in my mind for next season, and hopefully they will play out.”
Stefan Bissegger is all set to keep wearing pink. And if you’re looking at his results from this past year — you might predict he’ll wear a yellow jersey at some point too.
Our Swiss time trialing ace made a splash very early this year at the UAE Tour when he earned himself a second place in stage two. His skills on the bike only kept steadily improving from there.
Since then, the 23-year-old rider earned himself a stage win and some time with the yellow jersey at Paris-Nice, a stage win at the Benelux Tour, and completed his first Tour de France. Yet his proudest moment this year came on home soil.
“I’m most proud of the stage win at the Tour de Suisse. A win at home is always really special,” said Bissegger.
Not only did Stefan win in Switzerland, but he was victorious in a cinematic sort of way. A heavy dose of rain showers in the Alps wasn’t going to stop him from securing a victory in his country. Plus, it became evident that Bissegger knows how to manage slippery roads and other unfavorable conditions. In fact, some might say he thrives when the weather and terrain is less than agreeable.
“The more dangerous, the better for Stefan,” said team CEO Jonathan Vaughters. “He’s a great bike handler and instinctively knows how to handle tricky sections at speed.”
At this year’s Tour de France time trials, Stefan made headlines with his unbelievable save on the wet roads en route to Laval. Spectators and fans around the world had their hearts collectively stop when Bissegger was able to avoid a serious crash, shake it off, and keep racing full speed ahead.
“He’s exceptional on TT courses with numerous technical corners, and he can hold speed very well. In fact, I think he’ll be able to win the first time trial at the 2022 Tour de France,” Vaughters said.
Vaughters and Bissegger also know that he has potential to win not only in the time trials, but the Classic races as well.
“He’s not only a time trial rider but he’s quite good in races like Paris-Roubaix, which call for positioning and raw power,” Vaughters added. “Eventually, I think he’ll be one of the top riders at that race, too.”
Bissegger proved just how versatile a rider he really is at the toughest one-day race of the year. He was composed and even looked calm in the most demanding sectors of the race, and all made even more impressive by the fact that it was his very first Roubaix.
‘It was special to be up there in the lead group. It felt really nice and it was just a really epic race, ” said Bissegger.
Stefan is close to many riders on the team, including Jonas Rutsch who has also recently announced his decision to ride with the team next year. He’s also looking forward to working with the team’s sport directors, including Andreas Klier, who “discovered” Bisseger after watching him race at the Tour de l’Ain stage win on YouTube.
“Andreas is like a mentor to all of the riders and his knowledge on the materials is just really good. I’m really looking forward to working with the entire team next season. I want to improve myself in the big Classics and also in the time trials,” Bissegger said.