Hardy Grune of Germany writes for Bicycling and local paper.


This is a portion of his article:

The racers are in the minority

Each of the 40 participants has its own deal with the challenges . For a
small group of ambitious and predominantly male participants , the race is
in the foreground . They race through villages and over the passes to pay
too much attention without their environment . Your goal is the victory that
is celebrated and discussed extensively in the target . This Racer , as they
are called among us drivers , but are in the minority , because for most of
the participants are experiencing the landscape and their own sensibilities
in the center . Physically, the racers are already a class by itself . My
attempts to ride in the front field , at least until now always ended after
about half a day’s ride

One of the fast men is the second German participant next to me , Alfred
Mähr . A former league footballer and sports teachers from near Ravensburg ,
with his 65 years has a toned body and is virtually unstoppable on his 29er
mountain bike , especially off-road. ” I like the peace that I have away
from the traffic ,” he says , ” and since I live almost in the Allgäu , of
course I also like the mountains .” The competition games for Mähr only a
supporting role , he says . ” My goal is to arrive in Ushuaia . But if the
disease comes , and may even come from overloading the body, it is quickly
over with the race . ”

Now Mähr is however currently third in the drivers’ standings – and yet he
has discovered the thrill of winning. “When I see that I can keep up in the
mountains with the best riders here , already comes to ambition . Defend
third place would certainly be fantastic

“You ‘re cycled from A to B ”

Who wants to win: the American James Hodges . While seven in the morning
slowly torturing most drivers half of the springs , Hodges has already spent
half an hour with the bike maintenance , and while the rest of us still wipe
us the breakfast crumbs from the corners of his mouth , he is already
sitting ready on the saddle . The 63 -year-old has run many ultra –
marathons before his knee no longer play along . So he got on his bike and
raced up to 2,700 miles at a stretch . ” I like to challenge myself. Too,
then keep going when it is no longer fun or not it actually goes on. ”

Not the pace , but the consistency is the key factor for the former teacher
from Virginia . ” Everyone here drives his own race . And it is important
that you have contact with the own body . Fact that its weaknesses can feel
it, and be accountable . Then you come in the end to the finish. ” Primarily
but will also Hodges arrive especially in Ushuaia . ” I want to look and say
later on the South American Map : ‘ That you ‘re completely cycled from A to
B . ‘ ”

Hardy Grune


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