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Attacking solo after around 50km of racing, Voss completed a 100km time trial to win the inaugural edition of Rad am Ring; Mühlberger made it a 1-2 for Bora-Argon 18 that had six riders in the top 10

Photo: A.S.O.








31.07.2016 @ 17:01 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

Paul Voss (Bora-Argon 18) took his first win since his surprise victory in the prologue at the 2010 Volta a Catalunya when he completed a magnificent solo ride of more than 100km to win the inaugural edition of the German one-day race Rad am Ring. His teammate Gregor Mühlberger made it a 1-2 for Bora-Argon 18 that even had six riders in the top 10, while Jan Tratnik (Amplatz) won a three-rider sprint for third.


In 2010, Paul Voss seemed to be on track for a great WorldTour career when he beat all the stars in the Volta a Catalunya prologue. However, like many other German riders, he suffered when the Milram team folded and he had to spend a few years at the lower level.


However, Voss has slowly returned to the top ranks with the Bora-Argon 18 team and he has now done the Vuelta once and the Tour de France thrice since he joined the squad. Unfortunately, his strong showings in the classics haven’t yielded any wins but today he finally broke his drought in the new German one-day race, Rad am Ring.


Voss was part of a strong Bora-Argon 18 team for his home race and they were very motivated to shine in their native Germany. On the very hilly course that was similar to the one used for Rudi Altig’s triumphant ride at the World Championships a few years in 1966, the German completed a solo ride of more than 100km to finish off a fantastic performance by the entire squad that delivered a 1-2 and had six riders in the top 10.


The inaugural edition of the Rad am Ring was held just 140km long but it made up for the short distance by a significant amount of climbing. It both started and finished on the Nürburgring and could be split in two. First the riders did five laps of the difficult 23.2km circuit that is known as the North Loop. It includes the 5.5km climb of Hohe Acht that has sections of up to 15%. The race ended with five laps of the GP circuit which is 5.1km long has a total amount of climbing of 125m. The final 2km were slightly uphill and the total amount of climbing was no less than 3500m.


It was a cloudy day in Germany when the riders gathered for the start and as expected they got it off to a very aggressive opening phase and the group already split to pieces on the first lap. At the first passage of the line, a 19-rider group with the likes of Bartosz Huzarski, Voss (Bora-Argon 18), Christian Mager, Sven Reutter, Moriitz Backofen (Stölting), Karel Hnik, Jonas Koch, Jordi Simon (Verva), Tom Stamsnijder (Giant Alpecin) and Felix Grosschartner and Adrian Kurek (CCC) had a 10-second advantage over the peloton which contained less than 70 riders.


That group was eventually brought back and no one could escape during the second lap. However, the terrain was taking its toll and only 44 riders were left in the field when Emanuel Buchmann (Bora-Argon18) led them across the line for the second time.


The decisive move came on the third lap when Voss made his attack. He crossed the line with a 15-second advantage over a group with Jonas Rapp (Heizomat), Buchmann, Gregor Mühlberger, Schillinger (Bora-Argon 18), Nikias Arndt (Giant-Alpecin), Andi Bajc, Jan Tratnik (Amplatz), Karel Hnik (Verva) and Grosschartner. Reutter, Sebastian Baldauf (Hrninkow), Piotr Brozyna, Davide Rebellin (CCC), Huzarski, Patrick Konrad, Cesare Benedetti (Bora-Argon 18), Jan Tschernoster (Rad-Net), Koch, Simon (Verva), Alexander Kolobnev (Gazpromt) and Frederik Dombrowski and Raphael Freienstein (Kuota-Lotto) were one minute behind while the peloton had already lost more than three minutes.


On the next lap, Buchmann and Bajc took off in pursuit of Voss who was 45 seconds ahead of Tratnik and 1.25 ahead of Buchmann at the end of the next lap. Kolobnev, Freienstein, Dombrowski, Baldauf, Koch, Simon, Reutter, Huzarski, Konrad, Benedetti, Rebellin and Brozyna bridged the gap to the chasers but they were now more than 2 minutes behind.


Voss pressed on while Rebellin and Mühlberger attacked before joining forces with Tratnik and Buchmann. However, the quartet was still 1.07 behind at the end of the final lap of the big circuit where the rest of the small chase group still had two minutes to make up. At this point, only 24 riders were left in the race.


The chasers didn’t get any closer during the first lap of the small circuit and so Voss managed to extend his advantage to 1.23. The next group was now at 2.55 and it was clear that they were out of contention.


At the end of the second lap, the gap were 1.31 and 3.40 respectively and when they were 132 and 4.39 one lap later, it was evident that Voss was on track for the win. He started the final lap with gaps of 1.36 and 4.38 respectively and didn’t take any chances during the final 5km.


While Voss celebrated the win, the battle for the minor podium positions were on and it was Mühlberger who made a well-timed attack to take second with a time loss of 1.21. Tratnik beat Buchmann in the sprint for third 11 seconds later. With Konrad, winning the sprint for sixth and Schillinger and Benedetti also in the top 10, it ended as a near-perfect day for Bora-Argon 18.


With the Rad am Ring done and dusted, attention in Germany turns to the biggest one-day race, Vattenfall Cyclassics, which will welcome the WorldTour peloton on August 21.



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