BAHRAIN Merida’s Sonny Colbrelli won his first World Tour race yesterday on the second stage of Paris-Nice, and brought first European victory to the team.
The stage was a hard and challenging event for all the riders competing against each other and the rains and winds with the temperature also dropping to 4 degrees Celius.
Colbrelli was very calm during the race, always keeping to the middle of any group and waiting for the race to develop to an ideal scenario for him. When it did, he grabbed the opportunity and won his first World Tour title and brought the first European victory to the Bahrain Merida Cycling Team.
“It’s such a special day. My first World Tour win, and it is the biggest win of my career. I’m really happy. It has been a hard stage, with torrential rains and a lot of echelons. I made a great sprint. I feared they would catch me in the final metres, and I tried to resist,” Colbreli said after the race.
“I was riding at Paris-Nice for the first time, to prepare for Milano-Sanremo, because I would like to change my approach to that important race, but now I’m here, and there will also be other stages that suit me. I will focus on Milano Sanremo after this race,” he added.
On this occasion Representative of His Majesty the King for Charity Works and Youth Affairs, Chairman of the Supreme Council for Youth and Sports, President of Bahrain Olympic Committee Shaikh Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa, hailed Bahrain Merida Cycling Team’s victory in the second stage of Paris-Nice Tour, the first of its kind feat since the team’s launch earlier this year.
Shaikh Nasser asserted that this accomplishment will boost the team’s confidence and efforts to record more successes, praising the team’s efforts in France, which allowed it to emerge victorious in the race.
“The team began making its way to victories and topping podiums. This was a true start for the team. The Paris-Nice Tour has been widely followed since its introduction and is considered one of the key races in the World Tour. We are jubilant to hold high the Kingdom’s flag, in such competition,” Shaikh Nasser said.
“I am very happy with this achievement after an important stage that witnessed torrential rains and high winds. The team proved its capability to overcome any challenge towards achieving great results, through which we want to promote Bahrain across famous arenas and in various fields,” Shaikh Nasser added.