Peter Sagan is back.
Did he ever really leave? Or are our expectations of one of the most prolific pros of the last decade so high that any drought, however mild, feels like a desert?
After a nine-month dry spell, time that included a stint in Kansas for Unbound Gravel among other adventures, Peter Sagan got back to winning ways at the Tour de Suisse, his first win for new team TotalEnergies.
The Slovakian lurked ominously as the race entered the final few kilometres, DSM trying to set things up for Cees Bol before Ineos Grenadiers’ Geraint Thomas led out for Tom Pidcock.
Then Intermarché-Wanty Gobert Matériaux took over Alexander Kristoff, Sagan sat on his wheel. The Slovakian then sensed an opportunity to pull up alongside the Norwegian, boxed in as his lead-out man Andrea Pasqualon was situated too close to the barriers before the road widened.
That was all Sagan needed, getting the jump on his rival, with Bryan Coquard finishing strong to pick up second place.”
“It’s hard to get back in racing mood after my sickness, I was three months without racing,” Sagan explained after the finish, his season so far mired by a second Covid-19 positive and illness. “It just needs time.”
It didn’t take long for Sagan to tire once more of all the fluff that surrounds crossing the line first. “It’s just a stage win,” he replied matter of factly when asked if this victory meant more to him after his fallow period.
“Is this a sign that Peter Sagan is back?” the interviewer asked.
“Well, it’s nice to be back,” Sagan laughed.