19-year old Alan Banaszek finished 6th in the HC one-day German event, Sparkassen Münsterland Giro. That was the last European race for CCC Sprandi Polkowice and for the youngster it was the last test before the world championships.
Sparkassen Münsterland Giro was 214 kilometers long. The profile was mostly flat with some gentle hills, and a twisty lap in the city of Munster in the end.
The breakaway was established in the first hour of racing and included 6 riders – Silvio Herklotz (Bora-Argon 18), Aime de Gendt (Topsport Vlaanderen – Baloise), Paweł Bernas (Verva ActiveJet), Roland Thalmann (Team Roth), Robert Kessler (LKT Team Brandenburg ) and Sjoerd Kouwenhoven (Metec – TKH Continental Cyclingteam p/b Mantel). They gained over 7 minutes of advantage, but due to the long distance it was never a threat for the peloton. The escape got caught with 20km to go.
Most of the race was quite calm, until the final 30 kilometers. This was when it started to rain. The weather and the cobblestone sections on the Munster circuit caused the bunch to split. Some riders went down, but I managed to make it into the decisive 20-man group – Alan Banaszek explains.
I was very well positioned in the finale, since I was “sitting” on Degenkolb’s wheel. In the very end I got pushed off of that spot though and finished in 6th place. I think I could have done better in terms of result, but I’m still satisfied with the outcome. I am also happy about the team performance – I got a lot of help today from my teammates and I’m very grateful for that.
For Banaszek that was the last “exam” before leaving for U23 world championships.
As I said before European championships, I’ve been aiming with my form at the worlds and everything is going the right direction. I feel strong and I may be even stronger in Qatar. Now I will go back to Poland and on October 6th I’m flying to Doga.
John Degenkolb (Team Giant – Alpecin) was the fastest at the line, defeating Roy Jans (Wanty – Groupe Gobert) and Pascal Ackermann (Rad-Net Rose Team).