2022 was the year of Katharina Fox. The 26-year-old from Heidelberg from the MAXX-SOLAR LINDIG Women Racing team won the overall ranking for women in the “Müller – Die lila Logistik Rad-Bundesliga” this season. The prospective teacher also shone at the LOTTO Thüringen Ladies Tour, wearing each of the jerseys for the most combative rider and the jersey for the best club rider for one day. In the interview, Katharina Fox looks back and gives an outlook on the new year.
Katharina Fox, what is your conclusion for the 2022 season?
It was a really nice year, both in terms of performance and experience. We rode in the Bundesliga in Germany, the Bundesliga in Austria, and then even some UCI races like the LOTTO Thüringen Ladies Tour. That was a lot of fun.
You won the “Müller – Die lila Logistik Rad-Bundesliga”, but you were also on the podium of the LOTTO Thüringen Ladies Tour and won two jerseys there. What was more valuable to you?
That’s really difficult to say. Of course, I’m very happy about the overall victory in the Bundesliga and it’s also worth a lot because it reflects the performance of a whole season. But of course, the jerseys that I was allowed to wear at the UCI Tour in Thüringen are something special for me – especially for me as an amateur rider. Of course, I like to measure myself up to see what I still have to do to get there – so the jerseys are very important.
What is the reason for the many good races and results this year?
I think my performance increase is due to regular and systematic training. Actually, I’ve only been racing for two and a half years. I’ve never really done competitive sports. I was once in a cross-country skiing club. It wasn’t until I moved to Freiburg for my studies that I got back to cross-country skiing and then to cycling. The first year I just rode for fun. In the second year, I tried to work with different intensities – I wouldn’t call it intervals yet. I’ve only been working with a coach for two and a half years: Christian Müller has been coaching me ever since I’ve been in the MAXX-SOLAR LINDIG Women Racing team and it works really well. He creates a very good training plan for me, which keeps me moving forward.
Where do you see your greatest strength?
I really enjoy the time trial. And if I trained a bit more and better, I would definitely have potential there. Before the German Championships, where I finished tenth, I had only been on the time trial bike three times in twelve months. Of course, that was not enough.
How long can traineeship and later the teaching profession and cycling be pursued side by side?
That’s a very difficult question. I will decide when I have to decide. At the moment, both are going well side by side. I hope that cycling and my job as a teacher will continue to be compatible in the future – even though I’ve been pushed to my limit a bit lately. But cycling is really a good balance for the head – afterwards, I’m fresh and motivated again, as far as the other tasks are concerned. But of course, I can’t put my full focus on cycling, for example, I’m tied to the holidays for training camps. If at some point it doesn’t work that way anymore, I’ll have to deal with it. But when I think about becoming a professional cyclist – then I have to say: the teaching job is also attractive.
Were there any offers to go pro after this season?
Yes, a CT team cautiously asked what my plans for the coming season were. But I answered with full conviction that I would continue to ride for MAXX SOLAR – I feel very comfortable there.
Your team, which will be called MAXX SOLAR ROSE Women Racing in the future, will itself have CT status in the 2023 season. What are your hopes?
I hope we get more invitations to UCI races. Theoretically, we can also do Women’s WorldTour races – which is of course also good if you have an eye on the future of the LOTTO Thüringen Ladies Tour, which would like to be promoted to the Women’s WorldTour in 2024. Of course, we are also better positioned financially. As riders, we still put a lot into it ourselves to practice our sport. That will reduce.
Are the German Bundesliga and the LOTTO Thüringen Ladies Tour firmly back in your racing programme for 2023?
I think we will continue to do the Bundesliga races. But we haven’t talked about the priorities yet. And of course, I would be very happy to start at the Thüringen Ladies Tour. But I still have to clarify this with my employer because the tour (this year, due to take place on May 23rd to 28th 2023) is unfortunately outside the school holidays. This year I had special leave, which I was very happy about.
Interview: Thomas Juschus
Photos: Arne Mill / T.RF Sportmarketing