The German cycling federation BDR will elect its new president on March 19. The election will decide between two candidates: former Defense Minister Rudolf Scharping and hotel owner Max Benz. Former BDR president Sylvia Schenk retired from her position last year.
Scharping also had to resign from his ministry post in 2002 after several affairs. While none of them were truly severe, the Social-Democratic party was afraid his reputation would influence public opinion. Today, he ex-minister is still active politically, while his engagement for cycling has been widely perceived as being purely personal.
Max Benz, the underdog candidate, is a 35 year-old sports hotel owner thought of as someone who can bring a breath of fresh air into the federation. On February 19, both candidates will outline their programs to the state committee's presidents in Hofheim near Frankfurt. An unofficial vote will be cast after the meeting, with the final election taking place one month later, on March 19.