Nancy, France, July 9th, 2019 will always be a magical day for Elia Viviani.
The Italian sprinter for the Deceuninck-QuickStep squad won his first Tour de France stage today in Nancy, beating Alexander Kristoff (UAE Team Emirates) and Caleb Ewan (Lotto Soudal) in the bunch sprint.
As Viviani admitted a few days ago, a win in the Tour would go along way to determining which team he will ride for next year and the relative size of his paycheck. “This Tour will probably decide where I go next year but nothing has been decided yet,” said Viviani.
He’s had his best performances with the formation of Patrick Lefevere, but with the team re-signing Julian Alaphilippe, the budget just tightened up. There is also reportedly interest from French team Cofidis, who will be stepping up to WorldTour status and moving on from disappointing sprinter Nacer Bouhanni.
Which makes this the perfect career moment to take a victory on the biggest stage in pro cycling. Both Viviani and his agent will be celebrating tonight. Options are a wonderful thing when it’s contract time. “In any case, I’m certain I can do well in the coming years, whether it’s with Deceuninck or with Cofidis.”
Deceuninck-QuickStep set up Viviani beautifully in the run-in to Nancy. He burst up the left side of the road and was clearly the fastest of the fastmen. “Today we did a perfect job, you saw how the lead-out did. I just need to thank the team; they were really unbelievable. I just had to do my job in the last 180m. It’s what I can do better if they launch me like that,” said the Italian. “I’m pretty happy. I was missing this win; I won in the Giro and the Vuelta and now in the Tour de France, that means a lot to me.”
The tourism slogan for Nancy is “Votre place est ice” — Your place is here. We’re sure the city in the French department of Meurthe-et-Moselle will always be a special place for Elia Viviani.