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Yvon Sanquer: “We want a stage win”

One of France’s oldest teams, Cofidis came to the Grande Boucle with one well-defined goal: winning a stage, but this will be a difficult task considering that many other teams have the same goal, and also the fact that the last win of Cofidis here came back in 2008. Nicolas Edet, Egoitz Garcia, Cyril Lemoine, Luis Angel Mate, Rudy Molard, Daniel Navarro, Adrien Petit, Julien Simon, and Rein Taaramäe are the nine riders who started the Tour de France and Yvon Sanquer, the manager of Cofidis, is confident they can help the team have a strong race during these three weeks.

– Mister Sanquer, who will be the leader of Cofidis for the Tour de France?

This year is a different situation, so our goal is to win one stage. We don’t think of a good GC, even tough Dani Navarro was 9th last season. This year the Tour de France has cobbles and more tricky stages, so we know it’s very difficult to have a rider in the top ten. This is why we prefer to focus instead on a stage win. Dani Navarro is in good shape, his mind is focused on the Tour de France and he wants to be the one to win that stage. Anyway, we’ll take the race day by day.

– What are your expectations from Rein Taaramäe?

We hope he is ready to do some nice things, as he did in the past, now that he doesn’t have any health problems anymore. He came back at a good level just before of the Tour of Turkey and we are confident he can be a protagonist in the mountains. I know he wants to win a stage and if he does that it will be important for his confidence. During the Dauphiné he had a crash and it was difficult for him, but in the last stages he felt better, he attacked and showed he regained his legs. That was a good sign for the Tour de France.

– And how about Julien Simon?

He gives us many possibilities, because he is a puncheur and can get a good result in the stages with medium mountains. Remember he was close of winning a stage last year, in Lyon, but was caught with just one kilometer to go. I was impressed by his form at the National Championships and that’s why I think he can help us win a stage.

– In your team there’s also a rookie, Adrien Petit.

We have Adrien for the first half of the Tour de France. He had a good Vuelta last year, he developed a lot, and we are curious to see him in the cobbled stage, because he was strong in Paris-Roubaix. We hope to see him also on the flat, in the sprints, but we will also encourage him to attack and go in the breakaways.

– What do you think of the parcours of the Tour de France?

The first difficult stage will be the second, which will not be easy to manage. After that, it’s important to escape without any problems from stage five, where many riders will have problems and lose time. The Vosges stages will be very difficult, even more difficult than the big mountain stages. I think we can have a surprise there, especially in the last stage. In the Vosges there are a lot of climbs, no flat, narrow roads, and we have to climb all the time. The stage to Risoul and the ones in the Pyrenees will also be tough, but I expect the Vosges stages to be the most difficult this year.

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