Cycling in Germany is on its way back, and is going into the 2012 Olympic year with all possibilities open, said Rudolf Scharping, president of the German cycling federation, Bund Deutscher Radfahrer (BDR). Two gold medals at the UCI World Championships in Copenhagen are only a part of the nation's world titles in cycling this year.
“In the difficult past times, the main thing was to avoid the death of cycling,” he told rad-net.de. “We accomplished that and we now find ourselves in the next stage, which deals with building it backup, with stability. We have won back trust, but the road is still difficult.
Germany's totals for the year feature 32 gold, 23 silver and 21 bronze medals at World Championships. The gold medals in the time trial for Judith Arndt and Tony Martin, joined by three bronze medals, make the Copenhagen championships the most success in the BDR's history.
But they weren't the only title and medal winners. Other disciplines can also claim those honours ranging from track to artistic cycling, with the BDR claiming all of the titles in the latter.
All of which lets the BDR look optimistically to London next summer. It has already claimed starting places in 14 of the 18 cycling events. “The performance potential of our athletes, their ambition and their discipline in their preparations promise successful Games,” Scharping said.
He was also pleased to point to the accomplishments of the young and upcoming riders. On the track, Stefan Bötticher won three European titles and Mieke Kröger was not only fourth in the women's juniors road race in Copenhagen, but also World champion in pursuit.
Scharping also presented a new sponsor, JA Solar, who will support the BRD through 2014, with an option up until 2016. “I am convinced that the co-operation with JA Solar, with Skoda, Bio-Racer and all our other sponsors, who also stood by us in the times of crisis, are doing their part to help make the Bund Deutscher Radfahrer one of the most successful Olympic federations in our land again.”