Years of apprenticeship are no years of ruling. This was my lesson during the toughest race in Europe, the Race Around Austria. Adventure - team spirit - navigation - ultracycling. And time
This year's summer reached its climax during the race with temperatures above 36 degrees Celsius. Even during the nights the temperatures stayed around 20 degrees. In addition to the long distances there was the challenge of unusual high temperatures, which I managed well in the beginning. Only after 800km, in Bad Radkersburg, my batteries were empty due to the longlasting heat. So my crew let me sleep a longer period. Even though I felt quite well afterwards and climbed up Spielberg and Soboth my power did not return before the next morning in the middle of the mountains. Beyond the 1.000-km-point, a distance, which I could not imagine befor, I overtook a cyclist and realised my strength. So I pedalled even stronger and it worked. Lessachtal, Kartitscher Sattel, Iselsberg - top.
On the ascent to Heiligenblut a thunderstorm came up, half an hour sleep in the car and on the bike again in heavy rain at 0:30. The rain should not end any more, the temperatures fell and the time limit for Großglockner Hochtor closed at 4:50. Reaching Heiligenblut at 2:20 a.m. Changing for the second bike. Jumping into dry clothes. Our inexperience with these conditions in high alpine area including imperfect equipment led to break-off shortly after the entrance of the Großglockner Hochalpenstraße . 1.300 km, 14.000 altitude within 83 hours nonstop cycling - 200 km before finish line.
What did I learn from this ultradistance experience? Optimizing sleeping rhythm, seat position and training and equipment for longlasting rain.
"The mindset of a winner" (cit. sponsor Addapp)
"What an experience...absolutely stunning what reserves a human being can muster beyond the limit of "no more"...following the amazing Beichel." (cit team member)