Frankfurt: May 1st is a public holiday and we wanted to make it one. The day before, most of us still had to work, in the evening we got into the car and hit the freeway. Everyday life in amateur sport. However, the stress is quickly forgotten as soon as you have the other team members around and laugh together.
Arrived at the hotel in Eschborn, we met our sporting director Enrico Poitschke. The team meeting was on the agenda. We already know the race in Frankfurt from the last few years. The elevation profile has it all. One or the other driver still remembers the high speed that was set in 2013 on the Feldberg. I had a lot of respect and felt like I wasn't the only one. Our plan was to conserve energy for as long as possible and ensure that Daniel, who leads the GCC overall, is in the front group.
After the meeting we went to bed as quickly as possible, after all breakfast was scheduled for 6:30 the next morning. However, the weather didn't seem to have noticed that May had officially begun overnight: The morning awaited us with picture-book April weather. Not nice, not bad, neither dry nor wet, just something in between. Well, we've already had two wet races behind us, so we prepared ourselves and ours in a routine manner Fujis ahead of the upcoming race kilometers.
After the annual starting block labyrinth, we were at the starting line at 9:15 sharp. A few minutes later we were in the center of Frankfurt at racing speed. You have to say again and again, this route is really fun. Unfortunately, the race organization always has a few difficulties in displaying some obstacles well. However, compared to previous years, this time it was better.
After 37 kilometers the Feldberg was in front of us and with it the question of whether he would be the judge of the race again. Like last year, the Strassacker team tried to decide the race on this climb and pulled ahead of the field with four men. The effort was effective. The group got smaller man by man and up to a few hundred meters before the crest it looked very good for us. But then the group of the remaining 30 riders tore in two. Stefan, Christian and I talked and although I could tell that the two strong climbers were able to bring this lead to the finish line, we agreed: keep your feet still and hope that Till can mobilize all the strength he has left to get Daniel back put in the front group. Luckily that's how it happened. Two counter climbs later we were five again and therefore the best represented team in the leading group. We had to exploit this advantage. We timed the decisive moment and sent Stefan, who had already impressively demonstrated his strength in the previous races, to his heels with 12 kilometers to go.
The plan worked. At first he could always be seen a few meters in front of the field, but suddenly the other teams slowed down the tracking work and Stefan disappeared as a small dot on the horizon. Hats off to this great performance. Thanks to the other good placements of our boys, we also made the victory in the team classification perfect that day. May 1st, a real holiday. In this sense, Frederick!