"A beautiful year"
Australian-born Heinrich Haussler emigrated to Germany seven years ago to try and make it as professional cyclist. Susan Westemeyer caught up with the youngest member of the Gerolsteiner team after completing an excellent season as a neo-pro.
"I simply wanted to find out what a three-week tour is like and maybe one time finish in the top five of a stage," said Gerolsteiner rider Heinrich Haussler of his expectations going into this year's Vuelta a Espana. Haussler didn't just meet his expectations, he exceeded them: not just three top five finishes, but also a stage win in Alcobendas.
Not surprisingly, this victory that came on the third last day of the Vuelta was the highlight of his year. However, Haussler showed promising form in previous stages. On a mountainous Stage 6, he finished less than five minutes behind winner Roberto Heras and was the best-placed Gerolsteiner rider. He then showed his sprinting qualities the very next stage, finishing seventh, and again on Stage 8, where he sprinted to a sixth place finish.
"Heinrich still has potential," said his directeur-sportif Reimund Dietzen at the time. "It's likely that it will just get better for him. After this performance, I expect even more from this youngster."
For the full interview click here.