Lisa Brennauer conquered the Sachsenring to become German road race champion for the second year running. The 2020 championships course was 28 laps of 3.5km on the Moto GP race track.
The race was nervous with all eyes on Brennauer and her compatriots, Lin Teutenberg and Kathrin Hammes.
“We started relaxed, we didn’t give the attacking riders too much space, some riders tried to break away, first a two-rider breakaway, then a three-rider breakaway but we didn’t feel too stressed about it.” Said Kathrin Hammes.
When the three riders were able to escape the peloton, the time gap was kept steady and manageable to bring back. But as the laps were ticking down the gap started to go out, nearing 2’00”.
Several times Brennauer tried to attack to get across but was reeled back in, and with the gap to the leaders becoming established, it was crunch time.
“The course was very hard, much harder than I expected. Each lap there was 3 punchy climbs which you could go into with a lot of momentum, but after 28laps it was a very tiring day. I spoke to Lin during the race to see if it felt hard or if it was because I wasn’t feeling too good, the nature of the course was brutal after so many laps.” Brennauer said.
At the half way point Hammes, Teutenberg and Brennauer started to attack to make it hard for everyone and to thin out of the field. It was hard to get away properly, but after the attacked there were around 15-20 riders left in the peloton who were in contention for the win into the final.
There was one rider still away, who had a 50 second gap in the last lap, 3.5km to go.
“Lin did a super job of chasing to close the gap, then Kathrin and I also tried to attack to bridge across but also to speed up the peloton because there was no organised chase with it being so wide, it made it difficult to escape. Kathrin chased the solo rider down for the final 2km then the chase ended and became the lead out, I opened up my sprint and we caught the solo rider in the final bend with around 350m to go then I sprinted fully to finish off the great work Kathrin and Lin had done throughout the race. I’m extremely proud to defend this beautiful German champions jersey.” Said Lisa.
Kathrin Hammes said “it was so nice we had a Championships at all because of the current situation and of course nice that we could win it, today was all about team work and trusting the plan.”
Brennauer will travel directly to Plouay to compete in the European championships, starting with the individual time trial on Monday, followed by the road race and mixed relay on Thursday and Friday respectively.