The two Grabsch brothers went into the Bayern Rundfahrt with different goals and came out of it with different opinions. Older brother Ralf, who rides for Team Milram, was pleased with his first stage race back after a knee injury, while younger brother Bert, with Team High Road, didn't get the stage win he had aimed for.
Bert, 33, had planned to win the 25.9-kilometre time trial, but instead finished ninth, nearly a minute down. On the final stage, he was in a breakaway group which attained enough of a lead to give him the "virtual yellow jersey," but the group was caught with 20 kilometres to go. After a break at home with his family, he will next ride the Dauphiné Libéré.
Ralf, 35, was testing his knee after banging it up in Paris-Roubaix and again later in training. The Bayern Rundfarht "was five hot, hard, but also good days. Through my optimal training in advance I was well prepared. Even though I usually take a while to warm up, this time everything went without problem from the first race kilometre," he wrote on his website, ralf-grabsch.com. The race went well for his team, with Christian Knees taking the overall win and Niki Terpstra finishing third.
Ralf will know ride in two smaller races before heading off to the Tour de Suisse. (SW)