SAINT-SAUVEUR-DE-MONTAGUT, France (VN) – Runner-up in the world under-23 road race in Belgium last September and winner of the Trofeo Alcúdia in Mallorca at the start of this season, 21-year-old Eritrean Biniam Girmay is riding just his second WorldTour stage race this week.
Sixth on Paris-Nice’s opening day into Mantes-la-Ville and again on stage three on the tough uphill sprint into Dun-le-Palestel, the youngster has been the stand-out performer for the Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert team.
Talking to VeloNews just before the start of stage five, Girmay acknowledged that the stages that he was targeting have now passed but that he’s still hoping to get some more out of the “Race to the Sun,” even if only more very useful experience of competing at the very top level, which is still so new to him. “I feel good after the first four days, I’ve still lots of motivation, I feel strong, but we’ll see after today,” he said.
“The first three days before the time trial were quite flat, and now we’re into the second half of the race where it’s harder. We’ve got some good climbers in the team like Georg Zimmermann and Rein Taaramäe so I’m expecting that we’ll be working for them, but I might still might a chance.”
Girmay comes from a sporting family who lives in Asmara, Eritrea’s capital. A footballer as a kid, he changed sports when his father, a long-time cycling fan, bought him a bike in his early teenage years.
Inspired by the exploits of the likes of Daniel […]