A team time trial and a summit finish will give the Tour de Romandie a different dimension, according to Chris Froome, who is looking for his third consecutive win
A team time trial on Tuesday’s opening stage and a summit finish on stage five are new additions to the race, which Froome won in both 2013 and 2014.
With Tour de France rivals Vincenzo Nibali and Nairo Quintana also lining up at Romandie, Froome knows retaining his title will not be straightforward.
“I’m trying to approach it as a completely new, fresh challenge – especially with the route this year being different,” he told teamsky.com. “There are a few changes, like the team time trial on the first stage.
“It is a completely different race. I’m just approaching it as an event that I really want to go well in. It’s a race that is always a good building block towards the Tour de France and it’s one of the key races before we get there.
“It would actually be incredible if I could win Romandie for a third time in a row but for the moment I’m just looking at it as another race, and I’ll take it one day at a time to get through the week.”
The past two editions of the race have featured mountain stages, but not a summit finish, with Froome taking the win on the final stage time trial in 2014.
In 2013 the Brit lead from start to finish, but he does not expect to have such an easy run to victory this year.
“The weather looks as if it’s going to play quite a big part in the race. That’s something we’re going to have to keep an eye on,” Froome added.
“There’s actually snow forecast for Tuesday. So especially on the high mountain day weather could play a key role. We’re just going to have to play that one by ear.”