The T-Mobile Team is racing in two corners of Germany this weekend: on Saturday in the "Rund um die Hainleite" in Erfurt, and a day later in the Sparkassen Giro Cup in Bochum (both UCI 1.1). T-Mobile will take similar rosters to both races, with Thomas Ziegler (2nd last year) leading the squad on Saturday. This year the 25-year-old is keen to go one better, and he has the form to make it happen. The all-rounder placed third overall in last week's Tour of Denmark, and received a late nomination to Germany’s provisional selection for the World's in Salzburg.
Another rider keen to impress on home turf is Stephan Schreck. "The Erfurt fans can look forward to some quality bike racing. The roads up the 'Hohle' are so narrow, and the fans are there in such numbers that you get an atmosphere like at the Tour de France," said Schreck. "The parcours there something for everybody. Any rider type has a chance there."
The duo will be supported by classics specialists Andreas Klier and Steffen Wesemann, the Dutchman Bas Giling and the Czech neo-pro Frantisek Rabon. And in the event of a bunch sprint finish, Olaf Pollack and André Korff will be on hand.
T-Mobile Team goes to the start-line in Bochum on Sunday with seven, rather than the permitted eight riders. With twelve laps of a 14.6-km circuit to ride, the Sparkassen Giro Cup has the makings of a great race: punchy climbs in Wiemelhausen and Stiepel, fast descents and plenty of twists and turns. Olaf Pollack and Stephan Schreck will not be at the start line in Bochum; instead sporting director Brian Holm will have the Russian Sergey Ivanov at his disposal.