4th place in America
After I was in Dubai for a week at the beginning of February for the HERO WORLD SERIES marathon and then only at home for two days before I went on to America, the time in between was very stressful. Two races in close succession are definitely not special good, but it just happened AND now in retrospect I'm super glad that I did it .. :)
BUT everything in turn .. Last Sunday, February 9th, 2020 I flew back from Dubai and landed in Munich in the afternoon. On Wednesday at 02:00 am the alarm clock rang again and I drove to Steyr to my friend Andreas Gindlhumer - together we made our way again to Munich where at 8:00 a.m. the plane took off towards London. Unfortunately, the further flight from London to Los Angeles was delayed by over an hour, so we had the first competition at LA airport - we had exactly 1 hour to make the complicated entry (ESTA), check out all the pastries, walk to the new terminal and check everything in again. Normally you need at least 2-3 hours, we got an express card on the plane, which allowed us to avoid queuing in the long lines, gave everything in the run between Terminal 1 and 5 and so we just made it on the plane to Tucson ... :)
Arrived in Tucson, I was really happy that all our pastries arrived and then we picked up our rental car. We got a free upgrade to a huge SUV, which probably needed three times as much fuel over 100 kilometers as my little one Car at home ..
On Thursday and Friday we tried to enjoy life in America as best we could. We visited a supermarket and saw that not only the cars are a bit bigger, but there are also weapons - 100 meters next to the delicatessen ...
Due to the many flying in the last few days, the change of time and the different temperatures, my health was unfortunately a bit tired and I didn't feel completely fit. Therefore I spent a lot of time resting on Thursday and Friday and thank God it was getting better and better .. :)
On Friday we finally made our way to the event site, a place in the middle of a huge desert of Tucson - there is nothing to see here, except sand, stones and millions of cacti. We reserved a place at the catering point and I once visited the 25 kilometer circuit with 375 meters of altitude ..
DAY X had come and the alarm clock rang at 06:00 in the morning (2:00 p.m. in Austria). We went for breakfast and then put everything in our car that we needed for the race.
The starting shot finally came at exactly 12 noon and over 1500 athletes set off for the largest 24-hour bike race in America. A specialty at the 24 HOURS IN THE OLD PUEBLO is the start, because it takes place continuously - only after I reached a bike about 500 meters long and it started. The start phase was of course extremely hectic and I tried to drive my own rhythm as best as possible .. After the first few laps everything became a bit calmer and I did that Biking really fun .. The course was very varied, it was always uphill - downhill and the trails were huge fun, unfortunately you always had to be careful not to land in one of the 1,000,000,000 cacti .. When finally at around 6pm the sun went down in the desert was another special moment too. Shortly before that Andreas and I mounted the SUPERNOVA-LIGHTS light on the handlebars, because for me it was the first 24-hour session End race outdoors and therefore the first time that I had to ride my bike at night .. However, the M99 MINI PRO B54 from Supernova turned out to be the perfect light source and I only had to use the battery once in the 12 hours of darkness perfectly placed on the top tube of the bike, change. Most of the time I was in "normal mode", when it went downhill quickly, I switched to "full power" and I felt like during the day - really unbelievable how bright it was Lamp is and also ingenious that it "scatters" so far to the left and right that you have no problem even when cornering .. :)
If I had a problem during the race, it was the temperatures and the tiredness = concentration. During the day we had 30 degrees and at night it was 5 degrees, I wasn't prepared for it in terms of clothing - although I should have known. Because of the 8-hour time difference to Austria, I was of course never really able to sleep "normally" in the days before the race and therefore I had to struggle with fatigue and difficulty concentrating for the first time in my life .. At night with a high speed kit on the trails with the cacti on the left and right, of course, that's not sooo funny.
But thank God it got brighter at half past six and from that point on I got real power in my feet and it was fun to heat the last 6 hours in the sunshine through the desert.
I am also very happy that my nutritional plan worked perfectly again, next to the mental one, probably the most important success factor in such an extreme competition .. :)
Finally the feeling was INCREDIBLE when I finished my 17th lap after a little over 24 hours and thus covered over 438 kilometers and more than 6300 vertical meters. This also meant 4th place in the largest 24-hour bike race in America !!!
Today the day after, I woke up at 02:00 in the morning, was unable to sleep and started to write this report. Of course there are a few places on the body that hurt a bit, but on the whole I feel very good well and i'm looking forward to home again ..
THANKS to my sponsors, who make these extraordinary experiences possible for me again and again - it will definitely take a few days until I will process all the impressions-experiences-experiences ..
A much bigger THANKS to my supervisor Andreas, he took all the work off my hands, was always POSITIVE, was always there for me, kept you up to date at home via Facebook + Instagram, always kept me going cheered and the most important thing, he sacrificed his time for me .. Andi, I can't say enough THANKS for everything and would be really happy if we could do something together again in the future !!!!
All pictures here at the post on my BLOG are also from Andreas .. :)
ride on Lukas