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Austria for the Worlds
 
By Anita van Crey
Date: 10/4/2003
Austria for the Worlds
 
-written by Vaitkus, translated by Tick (both from Cycling4fans)-

Austria is allowed to start a national team with 8 riders again like it did last year in Zolder. Unfortunately because of injuries to Gerolsteiner riders Totschnig and Haselbacher, the difficult course, and financial problems, the Austrian cycling association is only able to send six riders to Hamilton.

Gerrit Glomser (Saeco)
Bernhard Eisel (Fdj.com)
Peter Luttenberger (CSC)
Jochen Summer (Volksbank)
Gerhard Trampusch (Gerolsteiner)
Peter Wrolich (Gerolsteiner)

28-year-old Gerrit Glomser from the Italian Saeco team was the Austrian favorite for a good placing. Unfortunately he had a bad crash in a criterium in Salzburg and thus lost valuable time in his preparations for the Vuelta and Worlds. After recovering from his injuries, he went in poor form to the Vuelta, from which he had to make an early departure. However, he did not give up and will ride Paris-Tours as preparation for the Worlds. Glomser has shown his extremely good form this year as he won the Tour of Austria for the second year in a row. Especially impressive was his win in the stage which finished on the Kitzbühler Horn, one of the most difficult ascents in Europe.

We can only hope that his condition is good on October 12! He deserves a good result!

The 21-year-old Bernhard Eisel , who rides for the French team Fdj.com, is one of the biggest up-and-coming young talents in Austrian cycling. Wih his strong performances this year in the Giro sprint finishes along with two stage wins in smaller tours, he has shown that he is becoming a force to be reckoned with. The course in Hamilton should be too difficult for him as a sprinter, but he does come well over such hills. He is perfectly capable of joining an early breakaway group or providing some other surprise!

The nearly 31-year-old Peter Luttenberger, who rides for the Danish team CSC and lives in Monaco, would seem predestined to win on such a course. But one sees that the season has been too long for him, although he didn't even start until May. He rode both the Tour and the Vuelta this year and as in the past, finisehd well in the Tour. It was clear in the Vuelta that he had nothing left, and I believe this will also be the case in the Worlds. I think that Peter Luttenberger's time is over! He came to fame in 1996 when he won the Tour de Suisse and finished an outstanding 5th in the Tour de France. There has not been much heard from him since, and he has not been able to repeat his good performances. However, he has delivered his consistent "minimal" performance and UCI points this year.

Jochen Summer, 26, is from the Austrian Volksbank-Ideal team. It is surely an honor for him to start in the Worlds again after Plouay in 2000, where he was the best Austrian finisher. He has come to attention this year by his strong and consistent performances. He earned his spot on the national team with his 3d place finish in the Nürnberg Altstadtrennen, as well as weith good performances in the pair time trial in Karlsruhe and other national and international races. Although he owes his place on the team to the absence of other, better riders, it would be a mistake to write him off as a tourist or poor substitute. He will undoubtedly want to ride well enough to recommend himself to an international team for next year.

Gerolsteiner's Gerhard Trampusch , 24, has good chances for the difficult course in Hamilton because of his climbing abilities. He is coming in to form just in time for the Worlds, as he has shown with his overall second place in the UNIQA Classic (2.3) in Austria, as well as good finishes in one-day races, especially the recent Italian races. But we won't know to what extent he will be able to influence the race in Hamilton until October 12.

29-year-old Peter Wrolich, from Team Gerolsteiner, can't look back on a successful season. Despite a good form in the spring, knee problems kept him out of the Tour de France. However, he is just now coming in to form at the end of the season. Wrolich is known not just for his sprinting abilities but also for his active participation in breakaway groups. Perhaps he will repeat his performance from last year in Zolder and do well with his aggressive style. It would certainly be a consolation to him for his bad luck with injuries!

SUMMARY
By and large, the Austrian team doesn't have a good chance for a good final placing. As we all know, however, the world championship race seems to have its own rules and it remains to be seen how the six Austrians will perform in the road race. But results like last year (2 riders in the top 15) will probably only be a dream!

No Austrian Elite men will start in the time trial.


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