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Hurrah for Huzarski
Stage 7 Lübben - Naumburg, 213,6km
Every cyclist has done it, at least in their imagination, as they have been pounding the pedals on some wind blown training run that turns from a nightmare into a dream. It is easy to imagine that one is on a heroic solo adventure in a major stage race with the peloton far behind.
Today, upon rain swept long flat straight roads, Bartosz Huzarski (Mroz) turned that dream into reality when his epic 200 kilometre solo adventure not only gave him stage glory but also wrote himself into the record books.
It was a difficult day for the peloton. The roads (which included many cobbled streets) were slippy with the sporadic down pours. The wind swirled, and the peloton, numbed by fatigue on its 7th day of racing struggled to find a rhythm.
22 year old Huzarski of the Mroz team attacked around the 14 kilometre mark. The peloton increased its speed as the chase down started and then suffered its first crash of the day. Team Telekom and CCC decided that safety was the first priority and the Pole started to build a gap.
Starting the day in 35th place on the general classification, 16’50’’ down, Huzarski, a second year pro who was third in last year's Gorskie Mistrzostwa Polski and had a great race in the Ster Elektrotoer, eventually found himself a massive 27 minutes ahead of the peloton.
With no other team prepared to send riders down the road, the peloton with its mind firmly set on tomorrows stage Telekom decided enough was enough and started the chase back.
However mindfull of the conditions and expecting the young Polish rider to tire it was a cautious chase down. Clearly suffering in the last few kilometres Huzarski battled on. With 10 kilometres to go he still had 8’55’’ advantage. Yet as every small hill became a mountain for the tiring rider, the huge roadside turnout and the armchair fans watching live on television must have begun to wonder if the youngster would completely “bonk”.
As Huzarski passed under the Flamme Rouge still with 5’45’’advantage he would have been unaware of the fact he was writing himself into the record books twice. In 1953, the Austrian Franz Deutsch rode an epic 190 kilometres to win the Görlitz to Berlin stage. ”Huzarskis Husarenritt” (“Huzarski the Hussar” as he has been nicknamed by the German Press) has smashed that record .
With 800 metres to go, the youngster finally relaxed. He sat up, waved to the crowd, checked that his shirt was straight. Zipped up his shirt (again) and then raised his arms in glory.
A perfect finish for “Huzarski the Hussar”.
Steffen Wesemann and Ondrej Sosenka now face their duel in the mountains. Last year's winner Sosenka and race leader, and a potential record fifth win for Wesemann, will be answered tomorrow over this route -
1. Bartosz Huzarski (POL, Mroz) 213,6 km in 5h28'25" (39,0 km/h)
2. Danilo Hondo (ALL, Telekom) à 5'10"
3. Enrico Degano (ITA, Mercatone Uno-Scanavino) m.t.
4. Peter Wrolich (AUT, Gerolsteiner) m.t.
5. Marcin Lewandowski (POL, Mroz) m.t.
6. Christoph Roodhoft (BEL, Palmans-Collstrop) m.t.
7. Przemysl Mikolajczyk (POL, Servisco-Koop) m.t.
8. Daniel Czajkowski (POL, Servisco-Koop) m.t.
9. Gert Vanderaerden (BEL, Palmans-Collstrop) m.t.
10. Björn Schröder (ALL, Team Wiesenhof) m.t.
1. Steffen Wesemann (ALL, Telekom) en 30h28'45"
2. Ondrej Sosenka (TCH, CCC-Polsat) à 10 sec.
3. Enrico Poitschke (ALL, Team Wiesenhof) à 7'11"
4. Jakob Piil (DAN, CSC) à 7'15"
5. Zbigniew Piatek (POL, Mroz) à 7'16"
6. Marco Pinotti (ITA, Lampre) à 7'19"
7. Tomas Konecny (TCH, Ed'System-ZVVZ) à 7'20"
8. Marek Galinksi (POL, CCC-Polsat) m.t.
9. Jens Heppner (ALL, Team Wiesenhof) m.t.
10. Peter Bencik (TCH, Ed-System-ZVZ) m.t.