Defending champion Elisabeth Brandau and Markus Kaufmann won the German marathon national championship this weekend. Brandau won ahead of teammate Silke Schmidt and Birgit Söllner, while Kaufmann took his first ever marathon title ahead of Robert Mennen and former champion Hannes Genze.
In the men's race, local hero Tim Boehme attacked on the first of two 47km laps. Matthias Leissling and Mennen caught up, but after about 60km, Leissling got a gap.
Those chasing him did not work well together and Leissling got an advantage of 1:40. However, Mennen and Kaufmann later took advantage of a long climb and caught the solo leader.
The duo passed Leissling. Ultimately, Kaufmann proved stronger on the day and went on to win by 13 seconds. Genze was third.
Kaufmann was elated to win his first German title. "I was so nervous before the start and in the first lap, it didn't go so well. But for me, it was then all or nothing. That's why I set such a pace on lap 2," said Kaufmann according to the German cycling federation.
"It is difficult, but I just couldn't do anything more," said Mennen. "I have to say that Markus was simply stronger today. He earned his win.- With the field he was riding against, taking silver was an achievement in itself."
Genze, who caught Leissling near the very end, said, "Unfortunately my legs were not all that good today. All of a sudden I saw Matthias in front of me, and that called up my racing instinct. He had no chance to react to my attack."
In the women's race, Elisabeth Brandau initially led a nine-woman group. Silke Schmidt followed her and Birgit Söllner stuck with them.
Schmidt and Brandau were left together in the end at the front and agreed to work together, then sprint for the title. Brandau proved the strongest.
"It's nice to win here a second time. Today it was a lot of fun, even if I'm not completely satisfied with my form," said Brandau, who will race next weekend at the Czech round of the World Cup.
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