RSNplusPushing for EM and Vuelta
By Christopher Adamietz
Pascal Ackermann (Team UAE EMirates) celebrates his second win of the season. | Photo: Cor Vos
08/02/2022 | (rsn) – Pascal Ackermann (Team UAE Emirates) doesn’t have much reason to celebrate this year. Also, because of a broken coccyx, he could only win once in the first seven months of the year. The South Palatinate only had a worse record in his neo-professional year 2017.
But now liberation follows for Ackermann in the tour of Poland. In the 3rd stage, after a difficult stage, he is unbeatable in the sprint. Ackermann said in the evening in an interview with radsport-news.com, emphasizing the importance of his first success since mid-March when he won the Bredene Koksijde Classic (for me personally, today’s victory is very important, very important. 1st Pro).
The long-time Bora sprinter also made it clear that the four-month winless period was largely due to his long break after the fall in the spring. “For me, the Tour of Poland is the first race after the injury. I’m riding the Tour of Slovenia, but I’m not ready because I haven’t trained yet,” said the 28-year-old.
Pascal Ackermann climbed onto the stage again. | Photo: Cor Vos
Make six out of five?
After the Tour of Slovenia in mid-June, Ackermann was able to train extensively and continue to improve his form. With his strong performance on Tuesday, Ackermann showed that this fits the view of the European road races in Munich and the Vuelta. “The final is very difficult, many corners and climbing stairs as well,” explained the UAE expert.
Asked about the relatively similar profile of Wednesday’s stage 4, Ackermann said the climb in the upcoming section was “a bit steep, so not quite runner-friendly”. But he didn’t want to leave it without trying. “After today I will definitely try. I think the pressure for the European competition is gone now, I have to show what I am capable of again, “Ackermann, who hopes to be able to start for free. “I think I am in a good mood and now I just take what is possible,” he emphasized.
The liberating moment of victory. | Photo: Cor Vos
From Poland via Munich to Spain
For Ackermann, it is also about extending his strong record in the Tour of Poland – so far he has five WorldTour victories. Ackermann is not only enjoying the Tour de Pologne because of his past success. “It’s always good to be back in Poland. It is the first competition after the summer break. You can see how well you work,” Ackermann added with satisfaction. “I think I did very well.”
In addition to finding his own strength in the sprint, the Tour of Poland also serves for Ackermann and his team to coordinate the sprint train with the view of the Vuelta. “We are testing the leader for the Vuelta here. I think we are in a good position there. Seba (Sebastian Molano, d. Red) brought me perfectly today. I think we harmonize quite well”, Ackermann felt That good support in the sprint.
Molano will not be in Ackermann’s side for the next assignment, the European road race in Munich on August 14, as the national team is at the beginning of the title race. Although the official nomination is still pending, Ackermann not only has a very good chance to be nominated, but also to take on the role of captain in the sprinter-friendly competition. The victory in Poland should have removed the last doubts in the German sports federation about whether Ackermann is in the form of the last few years in the European Championships, when he won bronze medals in 2019 and 2020.
Ackermann thanked his teammate Diego Ulissi for his preparation work. | Photo: Cor Vos
Ackermann describes EM as his next highlight. But form building is all about the Vuelta. “My main goal is the Vuelta. We have trained them and I think there is still some form to be made before then,” said Ackermann, looking back at the final GrandTour of the year, which begins on August 19 in Utrecht, the Netherlands.