TEAM GREEN'N FIT started on Easter Monday Around Cologne into the German Cycling Cup season 2014. Throughout the season, two riders will report on their very personal racing experiences. Manuela Freund and Patrick Hanhart are the first to do so. Both finished third in their races, Manuela in the women's long distance and Patrick in the men's short distance.
Long distance, 125 kilometers
Actually, I should have started this report on December 31.12.2013, XNUMX. It was easy for most people New Year's Eve. For me it was the day when the goal Podium at Rund um Köln moved far away. The reason for this was a skiing accident. I couldn't train for two months after that. The first training session then lasted just 30 kilometers, for which I needed 1:25 hours! Who still thinks of Rund um Köln?
As the race approached, I reported anyway. On Easter Sunday I rolled the thirty kilometers to Cologne to pick up my race number. It was a nice feeling to see familiar faces again after the winter break.
The day after, however, I traveled there by car – after all, the race was long enough at 125 kilometers! The starting shot was fired at 9:30 am sharp. My short-term goal was fall-free to Odenthal. There was the first ascent and the field should sort itself out there. The journey there is not complete unexcited, but I find her acceptable: Everyone's standard I would say.
On the climb I tried to keep an eye on the two girls who are starting in licensed races for the Koga Ladies Team and obviously wanted to use this race as training. However, I had trouble keeping up. Up to 60 kilometers I managed to return to the field several times. After that, however, I had to hang up.
Together with my teammates Jürgen and Felix, I'm now concentrating on third place on the podium, after all it was still possible at that point in time. I also focused on catering, which was easy to regulate thanks to our sponsor Squeezy.
In the final it started to rain. That's somehow part of Rund um Köln. Unlike the previous two years, the rain was significantly warmer! Nevertheless, I will no longer be able to make friends with such conditions. Luckily, there were always dry sections mixed into the route. It was bearable. On the other hand, the descents on wet roads were not to my liking – my teammates were always looking around for me.
On the second trip up to Bensberg Castle, I again had the pleasure of being able to negotiate the pavement when it was wet. This privilege was not granted to everyone. The remaining kilometers in the direction of Cologne were not very physically demanding, but mentally! Too many non-racing driver on the way, but we're at one everyone race.
Luckily the roads towards the finish were dry and so we reached the finish line more or less safely. Since I didn't see any more women, I wasn't stressed about having to fight for every position. After 3:21 hours I reached the finish together with Felix. That made me 24 minutes faster than last year. The knee held too, just felt a bit komische at. I would say it was all in green area and very fit!
The success is also thanks to my family, who patiently endured my plan to be able to start in an acceptable form at Rund um Köln. But I also have to be grateful to my team, my training group led by Heinrich Hövel and my physiotherapist.
Short distance, 67 kilometers
Cosima, Marc, Andreas, Pascal and I were at the start for the short distance. At six o'clock in the morning it was time for us to leave for Cologne! Due to the late start, we decided not to arrive until Easter Monday.
Punctually at eleven o'clock the GCC season started for us too. With the best cycling weather, things got off to a good start right from the start. Already on the first long climb, the field split and a group of 20 riders formed, in which all the favorites were. Again and again individual drivers tried to break away from the field, but in vain.
Halfway through the race, our group was hit by a brief rain shower. On the last few kilometers, however, dry roads awaited us again and so it came to the sprint, in which I finished third.