Cadel Evans ─ who was forced to skip defending his title at Fleche Wallonne and missed the start at Sunday’s Liège-Bastogne-Liège ─ will mark his return to racing for the BMC Racing Team on Tuesday at the Tour de Romandie. The former world champion said he’s feeling “90 to 95 percent” recovered from injuries suffered in a training ride crash last month.
Evans, a winner at the Swiss stage race in 2006, said his first priority is to finish the six-day race without any problems. Evans hurt his right quadricep when he crashed March 31 while riding near his Swiss home. He has not raced since finishing eighth at the Vuelta a Catalunya March 27.
“I want to take it day-by-day and find out what level I’m at and from that make a plan of what I can contribute to the team,” Evans said in a team release. “The hardest part will be people expecting me to go there to win it. You have to be realistic. I’ve had four weeks of interrupted training – it’s not what I’d planned and not at the level I wanted to go to Romandie.”
BMC director John Lelangue said the mountainous race will be a good gauge of Evans’s fitness.
“It looks like his training is going well but racing is always different,” Lelangue said.
Taylor Phinney also returns to racing after time off due to a training ride crash. The U.S. national time trial champion will sport the stars and stripes in the 3.5-kilometer prologue and Stage 4′s 20 km individual time trial. His last race was also the Volta a Catalunya.
BMC for Tour de Romandie
(April 26-May 1)
• Cadel Evans (Aus)
• Amaël Moinard (F)
• Steve Morabito (Swi)
• Taylor Phinney (USA)
• Ivan Santaromita (I)
• Michael Schär (Swi)
• Johann Tschopp (Swi)
• Danilo Wyss (Swi)