Biniam Girmay became the talk of town when he joined Intermarché-Wanty-Gobert because of his impeccable skills. Now he faces criticism from every direction as he aims for a Giro sprint win. Girmay intends to face the second half of Giro with the same enthusiasm and courage he had in the first half. He aims to defend his own identity rather than being compared to other cyclists, he wants to show that he aims to become a better version of himself.
He has been compared to the likes of Mathieu Van Der Poel and even Wout van Aert but he stands firm by his own identity. On his rest day, Girmay was filled with happiness and hope, we could see that he is on a mission and he will not let anything or anyone drought his way. Girmay expressed:
I’m the new Biniam, I’m not the new Van der Poel or new Van Aert. I’m myself. I’m flattered if I’m compared to them. We’re similar in many ways but we’re different too. They can time trial better than me and Van Aert can climb better than me.
This is also only my third year as a professional rider. When I was a junior I used to admire and watch them but now I race with them and try to fight with them to win.
Girmay earned his fame and recognition after he won Gent-Wevelgem, right after that he was drafted into Intermarché-Wanty Gobert. Although he has been racing at the WorldTour level since a few months, he is a fast learner and he intends to put his skills to the best use, such as the Giro.
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Biniam has surely come a very long way, he learned how to use tactics against his rivals in Wevelgem and now he is learning the ropes to a successful sprint at the Giro. With this much progression, he will be able to win a stage victory and much more than that. Thanks to his wit and techniques, Girmay was able to avoid a polemical encounter with Mathieu Van Der Poel on Saturday.
His performance and experience is only enhancing day by day, we saw how he finished second next to Van Der Poel in Visegrád. How he finished fourth in Balatonfüred behind Mark Cavendish and fifth in Messina and Napples, he has a long way to go but he is getting there.
Girmay’s first and main objective right now is a stage win, and he has prioritized that over anything else.
If I win one stage that’s enough, that’s the main goal. The first goal is to finish the Giro, the second is to win one stage.
Of course, I’m a cyclist, if I won one stage I want another but if I won one stage, I’ll be happy.
Biniam belongs to Eritrea and right now his home country is going crazy with his performance, no matter what happens, he has surely won their hearts. Eritrea will be celebrating their Independence day on May 24, the same day when stage 16 of Giro will take place. Biniam hopes and prays to achieve victory before then.
There’s a lot of chances this next week. I can’t win on Independence Day but maybe Merhawi Kudus or Natnael Tesfatsion can win that day. I hope to win before that day.
I’ve had five top fives so far. That’s good. I learned something on every stage but you need the legs to win. Sometimes you’re lucky and other times not. Hopefully things will go my way soon.
For the next stage, and a jersey win, Biniam will have to compete against Arnaud Démare (Groupama-FDJ). The battle will surely be tough, who will topple who?
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Featured Image Via YouTube/Cycling Pro Net