Jan Ullrich to take part in American Gran Fondo event in Miami
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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Jan Ullrich to take part in American Gran Fondo event in Miami

by VeloNation Press at 6:41 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Former Tour de France winner will line out alongside amateur riders on November 20th

Jan UllrichFollowing participation in Gran Fondo events in Italy and Austria plus a general ramping up of his time on the bike, Jan Ullrich will line out in the USA next month when he takes part in the Gran Fondo Miami on November 20th.

The 1997 Tour de France winner, 1999 Vuelta a España victor and 2000 Olympic gold medallist will ride in a bunch with thousands of amateur riders at the event, which will feature routes of 25, 55 and 100 miles. Ullrich will presumably do the longest of those distances.

The German retired after Operacion Puerto in 2006 and in the years since was thought to be finding retirement tough. However he turned things around by returning to the sport. “After some private difficulties in the past, I have found the love for cycling again,” the 37 year old said. “Cycling was always the most important part of my life and I now find it enjoyable again.”

Ullrich rode the Giro delle Dolomiti Gran Fondo in Bolzano, Italy, in August, then went on to finish a solid 84th out of his age group in the Ötztaler Cycling Marathon in Sölden, Austria. This event covered 238 kilometres and included 5500 vertical metres of climbing.

Feeling the difference cycling at a decent level has made to his post-career life, Ullrich said that he has a renewed appreciation for the sport. “Cycling provides a certain lifestyle, as well as an additional quality of life through health, fitness and pleasure. Moving forward I would like to share this with others.

“At some points during my professional career, I was not able to enjoy the simple pleasures of racing over different terrain, the camaraderie with my team-mates and at some points the hard effort was no pleasure at all. Today all this has changed.” He said that the Gran Fondo USA series syncs with his “objectives and values to have fun while still being competitive.”

The Gran Fondo USA series is organised by the Monaco Star Production SARL company and features four events this year. Three have already been held, namely San Diego, Los Angeles and Philadelphia, while Miami completes the series.

Various others who either are racing as professionals or previously did will take part in the final event. These include Mark Renshaw, Paco Wrolich, Geoffroy Lequatre and Peter Luttenberger.


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