Wow, I am super happy that I could win the first stage of Paris-Nice today! My team supported me like crazy. That gives confidence for the coming days, not just for me but also for the whole team. The first stage was, as expected, very hectic and stressful. The wind and the forecasted rain needed our full attention for every one of the 154 km.
Actually I wanted to be at the start of the Strade Bianche in Tuscany today, but instead I am now in Paris. Because of the development of the Corona virus, all upcoming races including Strade Bianche and Tirreno-Adriatico have been cancelled or postponed. But Paris-Nice should take place as planned, with stringent hygienic procedures.
Second place in the Volta ao Algarve – I am absolutely satisfied with this start to the season. So it is highest time to say a huge thank you to my Team BORA-hansgrohe. Everyone supported me superbly, especially on the next to last stage. I now have the knowledge that we work well as a team and my form is good, and I hope things continue to go like this!
The Volta ao Algarve is the first important stage race this season. In the first showdown you don't really know where you stand in comparison to your rivals. But I already felt well on the first stage. That I was able to be in at the finish on the second stage, makes me very satisfied. Especially since I came to the start here directly from the training camp.
I hope that all of you have started out the New Year as well as I did. For the first time I celebrated New Year's Eve in Switzerland. However, the party was not at my house but at that of my almost-neighbor, Marcel Kittel. In the winter I am underway as much as in the summer. I have not been home since the beginning of December.