João Almeida looks to build on Tour de Suisse victory with amazing time-trial: "This is a very important race to prepare for the Tour de France"

This Sunday the Tour de Suisse began with a small prologue in Liechenstein and the best out of the overall classification contenders was João Almeida. UAE Team Emirates is fielding a luxury squad, with clear hopes of winning the race, with João Almeida and Adam Yates as two of its main cards to win the General Classification.

With the start of the Tour de France counting down, the last details are being finalized and edges are being ironed out so that, at the Grand Depart in Florence, everything will be ready for one of the most eagerly awaited races of the year. In Suisse, UAE have built a lineup with high ambitions and the outcome of the opening day was quite positive with Almeida taking fourth on the day.

The Tour of Switzerland is the last big chance for cyclists to put themselves to the test and this week there will be plenty of excitement in the mountains of the Swiss country. João Almeida was the fastest man in the UAE contingent today, completing his 4.77km effort in 5.12 minutes at an average speed of over 55km/h.

At the end of the stage and in a short statement to the team's official website, João Almeida said a few words: "I felt really good today, I rode a good race and I'm happy with the result. As a team, in general, we did well, so we're looking forward to a good week. This is a very important race to prepare for the Tour de France, so we're very motivated to do well here."

It should be noted that Mexico's Isaac del Toro, who was making excellent time on his ITT, had a setback inside the last kilometer, where he approached a bend the wrong way and ended up falling, losing 49 seconds to stage winner Yves Lampaert of Soudal- Quick Step. This ends up providing the Portuguese rider with a bigger position when it comes to protection in the upcoming days; also taking into consideration that he won 9 seconds on Yates.

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