BUNDESLIGA ROUND 2: KURSCHAT STARTS STRONG

Mechanical robs Kurschat of the lead.  Kalentieva finishes fifth after a hard week’s training.  Lakata and Mennen go home unsatisfied.

The second Bundesliga race took place in Heubach this past weekend.  The entire European team, with the exception of Sally Bingham, lined up at the start.  It was a weekend to chase points, hoping to rise up in the Bundesliga overall rankings.

Kurschat was in top form.  That much was obvious from the start.  After just half a lap he was 35 seconds ahead of anyone else – including a good contingent of World Cup stars.  By the second lap it was 45 seconds.  It was however all to come to an end with some bad luck on the technical descent.  The chain had become jammed somehow around the rear derailleur.  By the time he had freed it up, he was lying in ninth place, but unable to put maximum power down as the chain was slipping.  He finished the race feeling very positive about his performance, but unhappy with the 14th position as the final result.  He simply deserved better.  “It happens.  It just wasn’t my day today.  However my form is good and I am excited about the World Cup in Offenburg this coming weekend.”

For the World Champion the race was also being used to test her form for the forthcoming World Cup.  Kalentieva was using the race to complete an intensive training week with Offenburg in mind.  Her legs, however, were still feeling the strain from the Houffalize which prevented her usual domination of the event.  She finished in fifth position “it wasn’t a great performance today from me.  My training schedule has taken a lot out of me.  I hope to be recovered though by next weekend.”

Robert Mennen and Alban Lakata also used the Bundesliga race as a great opportunity to complete hard training weeks.  With neither of them feeling that they had completely recovered they rode through the mud.  Mennen managed 7th position with a time of 1hr52:45 and 2:43 minutes later Lakata crossed the line in 25th.

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