Küng deals with bad luck in Swiss championship: ‘Now it’s better than games’
Thursday, June 17, 2021 at 12:03 pm
Stefan Kung won the Swiss Championship for the fifth time in a row. At Le Chalet-à-Gobet, the Groupama-FDJ rider was more than two minutes faster than Marc Hirschi, despite a hole and a problem with the radio and power meter.
“The goal today was to defend the title, but it was also a good test for the Tour de France and the Olympics; the course was similar to the one in Tokyo,” Kong said afterwards through his team. “I started well and found a good rhythm, but after ten kilometers it was I have a flat front wheel and had to change bikes. Unfortunately, after five kilometers, I also had problems with the radio and the power meter. I was completely blind.”
Without any information, the 27-year-old sprinter, who has already won a stage and final classification at the Tour of Valencia this season, had my feeling he had to keep going. “Fortunately, I rode the time test bike so many times that I knew very well what to do. Once, I saw my competitors and after 25 kilometers I passed Mark Hershey, who had started two minutes ahead of me. Just before the finish I reached Gino Mader, who was It had started four minutes earlier.”
Then Küng knew he was on the right track, and finally, after 39.6 kilometers in the hills, he stopped the clock at 48:28 minutes. “Generally speaking, it’s better to have these problems pop up now than in a race like the Tour, the Games or the World Cup. You learn from this over and over. The feeling was good and I’m going to rest now. I don’t ride a road race to be ready for the Tour and the Games.”
Hershey: “It was hard to beat Küng on such a course”
Mark Hershey was the first loser behind Kong in the Swiss Time Championship. The UAE rider stopped the clock after 50:57 minutes. “I am satisfied with my performance. I came out of the Tour de Suisse strong, but it was always difficult to beat Küng on a course like this. Now I take a rest first and then focus on the road race. It is a relatively short course with a few strong climbs. So that should suit me.”