Sunday, January 28, 2007

The adventure comes to an end...

Thanks to Dave, Jared, Tom, Simon, Dan, Flo, Louis, Tang, Man, Daniel, Pong for my best off-season ever!

Visit for a huge selection of photos from Tour of South China Sea and Tour of Siam.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Stage 2-6 wrap-up

(that guy Koji, above, pissed us off when attacking the field in the draft of a team car on Stage 5. Man, I was mad, as you can see. Oh well, how else do you communicate with a Japanese when you're German and race in Thailand?)

On the way to the BKG airport. Finally, 1900miles, 1 flat, 1 crash, 6 weeks later - traveling home now. Stage 2: through the mountains, finished 28th, 2min behind solo stage winner 'druggy' Koji of Japan. Stage 3: easy transfer- stage at HR avg. 132 w/ field sprint. Stage 4: made the early break w/ the big players, 4th at KOM before leading trio rode away from everyone. In 2 chasegroups, going up 20% climbs and 60mph downhill, ended up in 'field' of 30 guys finishing 34th Stage 5: 170km flat back towards bangkok, survided the cat & mouse play of the yellow jersey and druggy Koji of Japan. Came off the bike 'unpurposely' in last K but no blood or bruises. Stage 6: The thai lunchboxes were a bad idea - tom and me spent half the night in the bathroom. Had to find a bathroom 60km into the last 190km stage and abandoned. Got a sweet ride in the AC-bus to the finish. Had lunch and beer at the palace. The hamburger for dinner made me even more eager to get home quickly.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

And the winner is...

..Ray & Corie Wyrick! I will have jersey for you in the mail as soon as I get back to the States. The correct answer was: Mehdi Sohrabi (IRI) Tabriz Petrochemical Cycling Team.

Thanks for all the e-mails; I didn't know so many people read my blog.

On a side note: Finished 28th today.


Saturday, January 20, 2007

Going 28.3mph to the River Kwai Bridge

So here I am - in the River Kwai Hotel in Kanchanaburi, Thailand. Today's 1st stage of the Tour of Siam over 155km was another fast "windfest" where the field was strung out long and a field sprint ended the day after 03:25hrs (avg. 28.3mph). I finished somewhere in the pack; nothing for me when local riders sprint like nuts for 47th place. My roommate for the last 2 days - Thomas B. - was our MAN in the only break-away of 16 guys today. Unfortunately, with 20km to go it got caught and we went 50kph towards the finish. Good job, though. That way, Dave, Jared, Simon and myself could take it easy in the peloton (if you consider 28.3mph going easy).Tomorrow is the day of truth with 115miles through the mountains of Northwest Thailand.

Other than that, Thailand welcomed us very warm; literally with temperatures in the mid-90's every day. Everything is very green around here, rice is growing left and right from the street and the local "Seven 11" is the place to buy cheap things.

Here are a few impressions I shot with my Canon Ixus over the last 3 days:

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Enter to win...

Okay, so after a while shooting at my readers with a lot of words and random talk, here's something for you guys:

Tell me the name and the team name of the cyclist shown above between me (r) and Jared (l) and you enter a drawing for a original Champion System Team Jersey. Deadline: January 20, 8pm US CT.

Send your e-mail to

If you've been following this blog and the results it shouldn't be too hard to figure it out.


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

A random Day in KL, Malaysia

7:30am - say good morning to Jared, turn around again 8am - get up, make coffee w/ french press, eat cereal + sweets from bakery, more coffee 9am - nap, computer, bike maintenance 10am - go ride, get cut off by one of million scooters on interstate 1, see wild monkeys cross the street, dehydrate in 80% humidity and 95¤F 2pm - get home, shower, WATER, coffee, instant noodles + bakery sweets, do laundry, nap or read Dan Brown books 4pm - take subway to KLCC, check out mall, look at bootlegged DVD's (James Bond, Rocky Balboa...), Starbucks, head back to condo 7pm - dinner at Chinese Vegetarian Restaurant, pay $12 US for the 4 of us 8pm - stop by chin. bakery, walk back 8:22pm - see bunch of cops outside condo, don't know if homi- or suicide happened? 9pm - watch movie (Conan, Police Academy 3), 11pm - bed time Good Night, Stefan

Saturday, January 13, 2007

A few numbers...

To give everyone an impression what I'm up to here's the raw data:

Stage 2 - 63miles in pouring rain, 27mph avg, 3rd place, HR avg 147.
Stage 4 - 85miles (30 of that uphill), 5400ft climbing, 4200kcal, 48mph max, 1 flat, 1 trashed rim, 1 lousy wheel change.
Stage 5 - 72miles, 28.8mph avg, 30.2mph in the 1st hour, HR avg 153, 2700kcal.
Stage 6 - 87miles, 28.4mph avg, 30mph in 1st hour, # attacks 30, # counter attacks 29, one 5k to go attack, 0 success.
Stage 7 - 1hour crit, in 30min breakaway w/ yellow jersey(!), 3 sprint points, 2 bonus sec, more rain & pain, 28.7mph avg for winning break, sat up, 10min. Gap, dropped from 23rd 42nd overall. Overall: 27mph avg speed for entire tour (550 miles)

Friday, January 12, 2007

Stage 6 & 7 - Wrap it up!

More rain, more attacks, more break away action (see picture on left), more sprint points and a few extra Ringitt (Malaysian money). The race is over and I'm glad it is. 6 out of 7 days it rained - while some areas here are totally flooded and people had to be evacuated. Waiting for the ttransfer to our "chill" place before heading to Thailand Friday.

More later,

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Stage 4 & 5 - Karma hits back

After 3 days without any trouble Karma stroke back on mountain stage 4 when I hit a potthole, trashed my rim, flatted going 65kph downhill and got kicked out of the 20 guy-strong front group. Before, we climbed already 20km uphill through a rainy storm and I found myself among the top 20 guys: only 3 (!) Iranian climbers ahead of us. I was feeling comfortable in the group, never having to go totally in the red zone. The descends in the rain were quite scary but I made it without trouble until that potthole thing and after I got a neutral wheel my group was gone; i was by myself before 20minutes later a group of 15 incl. Jared, Tom and Man rolled up to me and we finished together. My GC hopes were gone suddenly.

Today's stage 5 was uneventful, 120km with the wind going south - and no rain! Yeah! We averaged 47kph - going 10 minutes faster than the fastest estimated schedule. No break would stuck as the Iranians defended their leader and the pace made it single-file most of the time. To my surprise, the finish saw a little hill in the profile - wished I would have known that before...Well, it's over now. Got hit by good size of rock which jumped through the peloton in the last kilometer and got a nice little cut - but I didn't crash :-)

Tomorrow is the last "real stage" with a 147km leg towards Kuala Lumpur.

Good Night,

Monday, January 8, 2007

Stage 3 - 100miles in the rain

Quick update from flooded Malaysia: we raced 3 1/2hrs in monsoon-like conditions (see picture above). Water was left and right, from above and below, and from up front. My teammate Jared soloed for 65km ahead and represented the orange, blue and white. A little gutter-action split the field apart w/ 30 to go; tom and me made it. A 180 on the cobbles and rain made it VERY tricky and @ 500m to go I had someone watch over me again as we avoided a nasty pile-up of 15 at 55kph. Made it through and got the same time like the bunch; sitting in 14th GC now. Tomorrow is the day of truth with at least 25 miles of climbing... Good night, Stefan.

Sunday, January 7, 2007

Stage 2 - Podium Time!

Well, this was a stage to remember! I think my legs are coming around finally.
Throughout today's wet, wet, wet stage Tom, Jared and me were quite active trying to get into a break but the strong Japan National Team chased down e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g. So after 90 out of 200km I jump with a group and we drilled it hard up that little rise until we finally got about 15 seconds and one Malaysian, one Japanese and a Dutch guy was with me. Coming up to the 2nd intermediate sprint it was Malaysia and me going all out while the others just sat on...:-) I got third in the sprint and somehow that Malaysian guy was well informed and went by us like crazy knowing this was the END! Yes, they canceled the stage 5min later, stopped us, and we had to ride back to where the field was stopped. Reason: Flooding. It's raining like monsoon-like here for 2 days now in a row. So I did only 100 rather than 200km. "I feel betrayed!" :-)
Well, the UCI guys counted only the first 4 guys and that way our Champ-System Team got finally some podium time with me taking a bronze medal, while Tom stood it out with me in the rain taking pictures. I know you only stuck around because of the podium chicks...Thanks anyway!

A few persons/bloggers I like to recognize and say "Hi":
Meine Eltern - fuer Eure Hilfe und Anrufe aus Deutschland
My Fancy - I love you and I will come home sooner or later :-)
Tang/Ivan/Louis/Dave - thanks for getting us down here & helping us in those crazy countries
Tom - teammate and Blogger, check it out here
Jared - well, he's my roommate tonight
Ted - supportive cycling enthusiast from Wisconsin
Brian, Melinda - Thanks for all your comments!
Fast - What's up dude? You need to come to New York sometimes!

Signing off,


Don't mess with me - I'm crunchy, worth $0.60, great post-race food and will make your rice taste better! Thanks Dave for picking up a bag for me!

Saturday, January 6, 2007

Stage 1 - riding through the jungle

So today was the first "real" bike racing in terms of distance. 195km from Buntan to Kuantan on wide, open roads with a lot of rollers. It was tough. Coming from the 65 degree F Hong Kong to 90's down here made my head hurt a lot, gave me more crazy tan-lines and an 17th(?) place. Jared and me made it into the break of about 35 guys which formed with 90km to go. Luckily, I had company of recent Asian Games Winner Kam Po Wong (Hong Kong Pro) when briding from the field to the front group. That guy can motor, almost like a german diesel :-) After going 180km on the same highway straight we had a left-right combination with 700m to go and I kinda messed it up because I came around the corner 2nd and there were 500m still to the finish :-( Well, we came in about 4min before the field; still waiting for the official results. Okay gotta turn theat Windows 98 machine off for now, get some food, and some sleep rest for another 200km tomorrow...

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Jelajah Malaysia

Made it to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 4th country so far. Another culture (again): language (malay), religion (islam), massages (...), driving style (kamikaze), and lot of bargains ($10 Nike shoes). Race starts saturday morning with 200km stage...Let's see how it goes.

Monday, January 1, 2007

恭喜發財 (Sun nien fai lok)

Happy New Year to all my friends and readers of this blog. We have 2007 here in Hong Kong since almost 19hours. It was a loooong night! The sunrise told us this morning to head back to the hotel...some of us didn't woke up in the hotel though. We rode our bikes for a bit this afternoon and now we are waiting to go to dinner with our friend Florence in Central HKG. I will try to post some pictures here later since I "crashed" my camera last night somewhere in the subway :-(