There can be no denying that Matthew Riccitello is the breakout star of this year’s Tour de Suisse. The 22-year-old rider has now bettered his best UCI WorldTour stage result twice in the past three days, with the American climbing to third in Villars-sur-Ollon on Saturday.

Only Sunday’s 15.7-kilometer time trial – the centerpiece of which is today’s final climb – stands between Riccitello and a new highest GC placing in a top-ranked race. He moved to fifth overall following this latest impressive ride on the fourth straight day in the mountains.

Riccitello was best of the rest behind the UAE Team Emirates duo of Adam Yates and Joāo Almeida, conceding just 14 seconds to the riders who look set to take the first two podium positions on Sunday.

Also up for grabs on Sunday is the best young rider’s white jersey, which he has already worn in the race. He sits just 12 seconds behind its current wearer Mattias Skjelmose.

“It was a hard day all day,” Riccitello says. “I do a bit better I think when everybody’s tired. I felt good on the last climb and I surprised myself a bit.

“I tried to follow Joāo and Adam but I couldn’t hang on all the way to the line. I just had to kind of time trial to the finish. But, overall, it was a good day.”

Riccitello also acknowledged the effort of his IPT teammates in the race. Marco Frigo and George Bennett in particular excelled today, notably positioning him well on the lower part of the final climb. Bennett finished 25th on the stage and now sits 18th on GC.

“The team has been super great and just trying to keep me in a good position, in the wheels all day, and I’m just really thankful for them,” Riccitello adds. “I’m happy to finish with a decent result to kind of pay it back to them. I owe a lot to them, helping me through the day.”