Dear friends, fans and FitLiner
I am in the middle of the preparations to get ready to face my next project in August 2012.
As you know, I will participate in the Race Across Austria (RAA) the hardest bike race in Europe, 2200 km & 28,000 m altitude in 5 days. Start will be on 15. August 2012 in Austria.
For my preparation I made an endurance test on big parts of the route of the RAA for 1000 km. Usually I try to finish 1000 km in 2 days but this time everything was different.
My starting point was the “Deggenhausertal” – Lake Constance. For 10 days and 1500 km I was leveling myself in the area.
Then I started at 07:00 h in the morning. Many slopes of the RAA were planned, the “Grossglockner” definitely had to be part of it as it will be a sting during the RAA.
Firstly I paddled to Dornbin-Bludenz up the “Arlberg Pass”, 1800 m high. Then down to Landeck and afterwards through the “Inntal” up to Woergl. From there to Kitzbuehel to the “Thurn-Pass” 1233 m high. Now towards “Zell am See”. At 07:00 h my Schliesser bike, my 10 kg backpack and I reached after 450 km the entrance to the “ Gloeckner Pass” – 12,5 km continuously 10 – 13 % uphill climb. Luckily enough I didn’t know what I was up to at a height of 2577 m… Already when I passed the 2000 m mark I realized that the clouds were turning darker and the temperatures dropped. The last 3 km it started to snow. Cold like an ice block I just had enough energy to continue paddling. After 2 hours I reached the top and only had one thought! Entering the restaurant and warming up again. I had trouble getting off my bike that is how stiff I was. The temperature had dropped to 0 degrees Celsius.
I was one of the first bikers reaching the top but I could observe how more and more frozen bikers entered the warm shelter. Most of them were not properly dressed for 2500 m height. The cold never ended. When I started for the very long descent it was 2 degrees Celsius and the snow changed to rain. It was hell. Some when down in the valley the temperatures increased to 12 degrees Celsius. Even the rain faded. But I was worn down completely. Continuing the “Iselsberg Pass – 1204 m heigh – felt 3000 m to Tolbach!! At about 17:00 h I reached Tolbach – rien ne va plus. Just dropping the wet clothes, eating and drinking. Afterwards right away under the warm blanket – pantywaist.
The next morning 18 degrees Celsius and sunshine. On my way to the Dolomites – Cortina d. Ampezzo with temperatures rising to 22 degrees – wonderful. A few smaller passes reaching Bruneck-Brixen. Up to the “Brenner Pass” the classic pass in the area. Arriving on top at 21.00 h the temperatures were down to 7 degrees again. Brrrrrr. Now a hot chocolate with cream! Full speed down 33 km towards Innsbruck – Inntal Landeck – Arlberg Pass. From St. Anton the last 4 km with 13 % climb, the “Flexenpass” 1734 m high, through “Bregenzer Forest” up the last Pass… “Hochtann” 1579 m high.
Back to Lake Constance – Deggenhausertal – DONE. 1011 km
Again I got it all. I fell during the night – bruises but no marks on the bike – great! Over fatigue, undercooled and drivers without any consideration – unfortunately. Total reduction on my end but HAPPY anyway!
I have total respect for the race in August but I will continue with my preparations, participating in different races.
See you soon