He said: “I’m really happy considering the injury I had. I don’t have the same base as most of the guys so I’m happy with my level at the moment. I’m building up race-by-race - I can feel that.
“I will see where I’m at on the climbs. I think I have my best shape of the season so far right now. I felt good in California, even stronger at the Hammer Series, and I hope to be good here.”
Sivakov is part of a star-studded field in Switzerland, with the likes of Richie Porte (BMC), Nairo Quintana (Movistar) and Steven Kruijswijk (LottoNL-Jumbo) tuning up for the Tour de France.
“Of course I won’t be climbing with the best guys who are going to the Tour but I will be very happy if I can do a top 15 on GC,” he continued. “That would be great. I’m really excited to know what my level is, and what I have to work on to be there with them in the future.”
Pavel has built into the nine-day race, and finished strongly every day in Switzerland. He rode to an impressive 13th on stage four, hanging tough in the peloton in torrid conditions.
“We’ve had two days in a row of really bad weather,” he explained. “The first day was really warm but since then… It’s really rained!
“Yesterday was pretty tricky, especially the last downhill. We had a final 7km climb, not so steep, but the last downhill was really wet and pretty slippery. It was hectic. We made sure we were at the front on the last climb and in the downhill to stay safe.”
Now, it’s time for the mountains.