Description: Marathon Race
137km, 400m of climbing, 5.35h
First Place in sprint finish against Urs Huber
I love tight finishes especially when I can cross the line first and also after more then 5.30h racing time!
The weather was not great but also not as bad as it looks like on the pictures. Luckily it was not cold and also the rain soaked us through the skin. Me feeds got wet and cold here and there. Something I really don’t like because then I some how loose the feeling for my pedal stroke.
Nothing too exciting happened until the monster climb the Chaschauna which is a wall after riding through Livigno. I lost the contact to Buchli and Huber towards the top but I knew that I am not under pressure being off the pace for around 15sec. The downhill on the other side is in my favor. Closing a gap in the downhill is for free without any extra energy spend. I am anyway always in energy saving mode until the last hour of a marathon race. It must be a head thing, but I just never feel like I have to race in the front unless there would be a long technical no passing zone.
The real show down was in Lavin one of the last climbs with about 20km to go. Last year I attacked through the town and rode solo to the finish. This year I just could not make up my mind. I actually wanted to hit it still on the flat before, then through town, then on the steepest part of the climb. At that point I was riding behind Buchli and I could see he was on the limit. When he passed the lead over to me I finally could make up my mind or it was just my instinct and I tried to brake away. Huber stayed on my wheel though. I tried hard in the next few climbs but not luck. He was sucking my wheel like a chewing gum. Before the last town in Fetan I pretty much stopped and told him off, so he also started to lead a little.
Now it was only the last downhill ahead of us. Unfortunately nothing technical only gravel roads and through the town over a long and super high bridge to the finish. Huber passed be before town inside line on a gravel corner. I did not mind too much since now I could follow him through the town with its tight corners. I knew my S-Works Renegade tires are better on the semi wet road and I have the better sprinting legs. I gave it all out of his slipstream over the bridge and finished the line a few bike length ahead of Huber. An awesome finish after five very unlucky races in a row.