Ride & Talk with Yannis Voisard: Cycling and nature photography as meditation

Ride & Talk with Yannis Voisard: Cycling and nature photography as meditation

Tudor Pro Cycling’s leader in the Tour de Suisse, Yannis Voisard, connects with his environment on every ride. Chasseral, a 12-kilometer climb close to his hometown of Neuchâtel, is an excellent area to do so. Whether it is good weather, bad weather, a hard training session with efforts, or an endurance ride, Chasseral is Voisard’s go-to. Riding there starts to feel like meditation.

Climbing up to Chasseral is special for Voisard. Not only is it his favorite climb, but it also feels a bit like Mont Ventoux to him. “One passes the tree line a bit over halfway up this climb. Chasseral is not as hard as Mont Ventoux, but they are kind of similar. One can do long efforts without any downhills, and that makes this climb optimal for training.”

Depending on the type of training ride, riding up to Chasseral feels a bit like meditation to Voisard. “Of course, when I have to do long efforts, which I like to do here on this climb, I have to focus and deliver. However, on a rest day, like today, I feel like connecting to my environment.”

Voisard Chasseral

 

“The weather does not really matter to me,” Voisard says. “I can enjoy views and looking around. However, when it is rainy and foggy like today, it is a different kind of atmosphere around here, but honestly, I still like it.”

Tour de Suisse

The Tour de Suisse is one of Voisard’s main objectives this 2024 season. “For a Swiss cyclist in a Swiss team, the races in Switzerland, like Romandie and the Tour de Suisse, are of course very important. I made the Tour de Suisse my main goal. I have been on Chasseral a bunch of times in the last few weeks to work hard and prepare the best I can for the racing ahead. I am excited to start racing.”

Voisard on Chasseral
Yannis Voisard BMC

 

“The majority of the preparation is done up to one week in advance,” the Swiss cyclist says. “I did some very specific training, like heat-adaptation and intensity training on the BMC Timemachine. In the last few days ahead of the race, I took some more rest.”

The 25-year-old cyclist from Tudor Pro Cycling then also had time for his biggest hobby: nature photography. “I really enjoy going into the forest and spending several hours waiting for animals that I hope to see. Sometimes I do not see the species I would like to see, but it is still relaxing. For me, nature photography helps find a good balance between hard training and mental health.”

Voisard BMC Teammachine

 

Chasseral is ultimately one of the places he enjoys for photography purposes too. “On sunny or foggy days, the light can be great on top of Chasseral. It is beautiful up there with views of the Alps. You can basically point out where the race route of the Tour de Suisse goes from up there. On today’s rainy rest day ride I won’t make it to the top, however, when the Tour de Suisse is over, I will be back soon.”