The finals of cycling weekend Rad am Ring were a single great winner party. Thousands of 24h-riders celebrated their achievement when riding down the finish stretch with Ralph Schwörer and Marion Wittler being the winners of the solo categories. In the pro race Rudi Altig Race (UCI category 1.1) that started shortly after, Huub Duijn of team Veranda’s Willems-Crelan took the win. A weekend with about 8,500 athletes competing and the riders’ dedication was rewarded with great, but very windy, cycling weather.
Riders who want to win on the Nürburgring have to perform at their best. Huub Duijn of Veranda’s Willems-Crelan managed to do so best in the second edition of pro race Rudi Altig Race and finished first in 3:27:57 hours.
Despite the pro race at the Ring was taking place at the same time as three UCI events, a strong field of 14 Continental and three Pro Continental Teams gathered at the starting line. After Willi Altig, brother of 2016 passed away name giver and former pro rider Rudi Altig, had fired the gun, the race took right off. Already on the first lap of the course (140 km, over 3,000 vertical meters) that had been slightly adapted to be more spectator-friendly (5 laps on the whole circuit, 5 laps on the Grand Prix circuit) the wind was blowing quite fiercely so that the riders had to budget their resources even better than they would have to anyway on the Ring. Nevertheless, a group of eight, in which also Christopher Hatz of German team Lotto-Kern-Haus rode, escaped - intermittently by up to one minute. They were caught later in the race by the peloton again, but the field did not stay together long as Sebastian Baldauf, experienced rider of team Vorarlberg and skilled climber, went on a solo escape before the peloton entered the last lap on the whole course. He could not keep his lead very long either, however. In the end, a group of four escaped from which Huub Duijn from the Netherlands of team Veranda’s Willems-Crelan broke away on the last Grand Prix lap and won ahead of his team mate, cyclo-cross world champion Wout van Aert from Belgium. The sprint and the mountains category presented by Gazprom were won by Huub Duijn and Wout van Aert as well.
Before the pros went on the course, more precisely: since Saturday at noon, the 24h-riders had been circling around Nürburgring. The long-distance event for road- and mountain bikes is the center piece of Rad am Ring. With approximately 5,100 riders in 2017 it is likely to be one of the largest events on Nürburgring participant-wise – and it definitely is a challenge that stirs up emotions. Not only while fighting one’s way up to Hohe Acht (at night) or riding into the sunrise, but also and above all during the emotional finish when riders celebrate, laugh and partly ride down the finish stretch arm in arm.
After a crystal clear night Ralph Schwörer with 26 laps won the men’s solo category, each covering over 500 meters of difference in altitude as well as approximately 25 kilometers. In the solo women’s category, Marion Wittler with 21 laps won. In the category team of two Team Bergbeisser Rennrad 2 with 24 laps won in the women’s category, milc ct with 30 laps in the men’s category. Teams Bike Market 1 and AVIA Racing 1 rode the most laps in the categories team of four and team of eight (33 i.e. 31). Their female counterparts were d.velop Cycle Café Ladies 2 (27 laps) and AVIA Racing 3 (22 laps). It was the third time in a row that d.velop Cycle Café Ladies (formerly Koga Ladies) took the win.
With roughly eight kilometers, the circuit of the 24h-mountain bike race was slightly shorter than the road bike course, but just as demanding. It led riders from a short passage on Grand Prix circuit up to historic Nürburg and partly on single trails back to the race circuit. Winner in the solo men’s category was Nico Mausch with 51 laps, Christin Becker with 21 laps won the women’s category. In the category teams of two team X-Sport Kastellaun MTB-Ladies with 36 laps won in the women’s category, their male counterpart were Firebike-Droessiger-Muttis tolle Burschen with 63 laps. Most laps were gathered by Dextro Energy Burn Babies Damen (women, 52) and Nicolai Bikebauer-NBB (men, 68) in the category team of four and by Rockhopperz (women, 53) and Team NRT Protective (men, 70) in the category team of eight.
With several inaugural events Rad am Ring also this year continued its development to mirror 360 degrees of cycling: Bike-Components mountain bike marathon (25, 50 or 75 km) was added to the cross country-offer. In the Dextro Energy Kids Race covering four and eight kilometers, young riders age 8 to 10 and 11 to 14 could ride on Grand Prix circuit and a spectacular freestyle competition as well as a live stream from the race course complemented the extended framework program.
An integral part of Rad am Ring remain the popular amateur races (25, 75 and 150 km) which are also part of the amateur race series German Cycling Cup as well as the Profile Design time trial on Friday evening. Head of organization Hanns-Martin Fraas was happy with the event: “It is great to see how the various disciplines interlock and complement each other. It was a challenge, but we again came closer to or goal to offer cycling in all its facets which is to a great extent due to our partner Grofa – House of Brands“.
For further information on Rad am Ring, please visit our website at www.radamring.de
About Rad am Ring
Rad am Ring is a cycling event which has taken place at Nürburgring since 2003. The course leads through the very modern Formula 1 arena and over the legendary Nordschleife. Highlights are the 24h-races on the traffic-free, partly lit race course and the team quarters in the pit lane. Furthermore, in 2017 Rudi Altig Race, a pro race of UCI category 1.1 took place for the second time. Besides the ultra- and the long-distance event several amateur races, a time trial, for the first time a mountain bike marathon and some bike rides without timekeeping were held at 2017 Rad am Ring. The amateur races are part of German Cycling Cup, Germany's largest series of amateur cycle races.