Detail

Markus Kaufmann and Jochen Kaess take fourth title in style | Janine Schneider and Stefanie Dohrn triumph in women's event

21.07.2018 - 15:01

Earning their second stage win on the final day of the BIKE Transalp powered by Sigma 2018, Markus Kaufmann (GER) and Jochen Kaess (GER) have secured their career's fourth title at the seven-day mountain bike classic through the Alps.

Team Centurion Vaude mastered the route's final 60.41 kilometres and 2,309 metres of climbing, which led from Roncone to Arco today, in 2:48.13,6 hours.

In total, the triple winners of 2013, 2014 and 2015 pedalled 22:41.23,9 hours to make it via 505.88 kilometres and 18,167 metres of climbing from Imst to Lake Garda.

Urs Huber (SUI) and Simon Stiebjahn (GER) of Team Bulls 1 wrapped up the Transalp as second of the general classification (22:46.44,7) being forced to burry their hopes for a wonder on the final race day due to a technical defect.

Over the past days, the Swiss-German pair had controlled the fate with four consecutive stage wins therefore continuously reducing the gap to the yellow jerseys. But today, rank four (2:52.28,4) behind of Tony Longo (ITA) and Johnny Cattaneo (ITA) of Wilier Force 7C 1 (2:49.55,1) as well as two-time world champion Roel Paulissen (BEL) and Mattia Longa (ITA) of Cannondale Buonristoro RH Racing, who jumped on the podium as third for the first time this week (2:52.03,6), was the maximum Huber and Stiebjahn could get.

Rank three in the overall ranking went to Uwe Hochenwarter (AUT) and Gregory Brenes (CRC) of Wilier Force 7C 2 (23:09.56,1), who rolled over the finish line in Arco as fifth fastest team today (2:53.09,3).

Following a stormy night the final stage took place on partly muddy tracks promising the most thrilling duel for the title of the recent years after Team Bulls 1 had closed the gap on the top spot of the general classification to 1.06 minutes over the past four days.

As a result, the dominating duos of this year's Transalp had a game plan in store for the showdown across di Giovo Pass and Bocca di Trat as well as several technical very demanding single track downhills. However, Huber's and Stienjahn's dream burst like a bubble when Stiebjahn suffered a puncture in the first part of the race.

While Kaufmann and Kaess had opted for offence is the best defence, Stiebjahn had tried to break away with Longo and Cattaneo in the downhill from di Giovo Pass hoping that his teammate Huber would be able to power away from Centurion Vaude in the final climb of the 2018 Transalp. But other than expected, his back wheel queered his pitch.

“We had a puncture in the first downhill, and basically that was all about it,” explained Huber. “But we are pleased with how the race week did unfold. It was more than we had been expecting. We were able to battle for the title until the end and also claimed five stages. Congratulations to Markus and Jochen who rode very strong and consistent. They both deserve the title.”

Thanks to their victory, Kaufmann and Kaess, who both had placed second last year behind of their teammates Hermann Pernsteiner (AUT) and Daniel Geismayr (AUT), were able to extend their squads Transalp winning streak. Since 2013, a duo of Centurion Vaude has prevailed at the BIKE Transalp powered by Sigma.

“It was obvious that today would be like all or nothing with plenty of attacking by all teams. Team Bulls did try to break away a few times but we were able to maintain in control. In the end, we did benefit from Stiebjahn's technical defect,” rounded up Kaufmann.

“This title means a lot to me. It's the sixth consecutive win for the squad. That Jochen and I were able to take home the win, especially after we had our problems two years ago, is amazing.”

Erster Titel für Schneider und Dohrn

Während es für das erfahrene Männerduo bereits der vierte Titel innerhalb von sechs Jahren war, sicherte sich mit Janine Schneider (GER) und Stefanie Dohrn (GER) eines der jüngsten Duos des Jahres die Krone in der Damenkategorie.

Die beiden Fahrerinnen vom Team Nauders Canyon/Cube, die beide erst das zweite Mal den Alpenklassiker für Mountainbiker bestritten, beendeten die anstrengende Rennwoche mit ihrem sechsten Etappensieg (3:43.47,5) und einer Gesamtzeit von 29:26.58,8 Stunden.

„Es war wahnsinnig schwer. Wenn man vorne liegt, spürt man den Druck, man weiß nie, was die Konkurrenz macht. Wir haben versucht, die richtige Balance von Sicherheit und am Gashahn drehen zu finden. Das war wirklich anstrengend,“ fasste Stefanie Dohrn zusammen.

Mehr Erfahrung mit Transalp-Titeln haben indes Massimo De Bertolis (ITA) und Dax Jaikel (CRC) von Wilier Force 7C.

Mit Platz zwei (3:11.05,0) hinter den Sunshine Racers Nals Victor Paris (ITA) und Thomas Piazza (ITA), die damit ihren ersten Etappensieg in diesem Jahr feierten (3:10.57,8), verteidigten der ehemalige Weltmeister und der beinamputierte Zentralamerikaner erfolgreich ihren Vorjahrestitel und sicherten sich darüber hinaus den Title-Hattrick bei den Masters (25:10.20,2).

In der Grand Masters-Kategorie fuhren Claudius Stoll (SUI) und Thomas Girardi (SUI) von Stoll Bikes dank ihres fünften Tageserfolges (3:15.25,4) mehr als verdient den Titel in der Klasse für Männerteams mit einem Gesamtalter von mehr als 100 Jahren ein (26:20.09,5).

Über die gesamte Rennwoche hinweg ungeschlagen blieben indes Verena Krenslehner-Schmid (AUT) und Philip Handl (AUT) von Imst Tourismus, die auf ihrem Weg zum Mixed-Titel (28:39.36,2) auch das Grand Finale eindrucksvoll für sich entschieden (3:42.09,3).

Die kompletten Ergebnislisten zur siebten und letzten Etappe als auch das Gesamtklassement der BIKE Transalp powered by Sigma 2018 stehen online zur Verfügung.

Die Sieger der BIKE Transalp powered by Sigma 2018

  • Männer: Markus Kaufmann (GER) / Jochen Käß (GER), Centurion Vaude, 22:41.23,9
  • Damen: Janine Schneider (GER) / Stefanie Dohrn (GER), Team Nauders Canyon/Cube, 29:26.58,8
  • Mixed: Verena Krenslehner-Schmid (AUT) / Philip Handl (AUT), Imst Tourismus. 28:39.36,2
  • Masters: Massimo De Bertolis (ITA) / Dax Jaikel (CRC), Wilier Force 7C, 25:10.20,2
  • Grand Masters: Claudius Thommen (SUI) / Thomas Girardi (SUI), Stoll Bikes, 26:20.09,5
  • U23: Simon Schneller (GER), Team Bulls 2, 23:38.00,5
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