Emil Herzog won the first German gold medal at the Road World Championships in Wollongong, Australia. The 17-year-old from Simmerberg won the rainy junior race on Friday and secured bronze in the time trial his second podium of the title fights.
Herzog showed an offensive and courageous race, drove up alone to the leading Portuguese Antonio Morgado in the final and ultimately was unbeatable in the sprint. “That was the hardest sprint of my life. We were head to head. I just kicked. I've never had such a sprint," said the young Bavarian. It went perfectly, even the rain didn't bother him.
"Can not believe it"
Third was Vlad Van Mechelen, the Belgian was already 55 seconds behind the leading duo. Herzog is the first German junior world champion in road racing in eight years. In 2014, Jonas Bokeloh won the title in Ponferrada, Spain.
"I can not believe it. It will take a few more days before I can realize that and really believe it," Herzog told ARD: "I've been thinking about this race every time I've been training for two or three months. I was satisfied with the time trial. It's just unbelievable that everything worked out that way."
In the subsequent U-23 race over 169.8 kilometers, the title went to Yevgeny Fedorov. The Kazakh relegated Mathias Vacek from the Czech Republic and Sören Wärnskjold from Norway. Michel Hessmann from Münster, who is under contract with the Dutch top team Jumbo-Visma, was the best German in eleventh place.
The Federation of German Cyclists (BDR) has so far won four medals in various junior rankings. Justyna Czapla secured herself alongside Herzog