For road cycling are disciplines of cycling counted on roads will be played. This distinguishes road cycling z. B. from track cycling , cyclocross , mountain bike and BMX races. The disciplines of road racing , individual time trials and team time trials are held at the UCI Road World Championships .
In 1817, the German Karl von Drais invented the walking machine called the Draisine . This is considered to be the first forerunner of today's bicycle. The world's first two-wheeler race took place on April 20, 1829. 26 drivers took part on the 4.5 km long route between Munich's Karolinenplatz and Nymphenburg Palace . The winner, on a wheel made by the Munich wheelwright Semler, covered the distance in 31 minutes and 30 seconds.
On November 7, 1869, a race was held between Paris and Rouen for the first time , which led from one city to another. The Englishman James Moore won the 123 km race in a time of 10:45 hours. Women's races were also very popular at the time. One of the most successful drivers was “Miss America”, who also took part in numerous men's races, including Paris-Rouen, where she crossed the finish line 12:10 behind Moore.
In the 1870s, so-called high bikes were built in England and the United States . A significantly larger front wheel has improved the rolling quality. In the 1880s, so-called low wheels were then increasingly built. By attaching a chain drive to the rear wheel and using pneumatic tires , the risk of falling has been reduced.
In 1892 the one-day race Liège – Bastogne – Liège , the oldest of the five “monuments of cycling” , was held for the first time. Belgian Léon Houa won the 250 km race . Paris – Roubaix was first held in 1896, the Lombardy Tour in 1905, Milan – Sanremo in 1907 and the Tour of Flanders in 1913.
At the 1896 Summer Olympics , the first Olympic Games of the modern era , a road race was conducted km above the 87th The first Olympic champion in road racing was the Greek Aristidis Konstantinidis .
In 1903 the Tour de France stage race , the oldest of the three "Grand Tours" , was held for the first time. Frenchman Maurice Garin won the 2,428 km race, which was carried out in six stages . The Giro d'Italia was held for the first time in 1909, the Vuelta a España in 1935.
The UCI , the world cycling association founded in 1900, organized a road world championship over a distance of 190 km for the first time in 1921 . The first world champion in road racing was the Swede Gunnar Sköld .
Between 1966 and 1976 the Belgian Eddy Merckx won the Tour de France five times, the Giro d'Italia five times, the Vuelta a España once, the Milan – Sanremo seven times, the Tour of Flanders twice, the Paris – Roubaix three times, and the Liège – Bastogne – Liège five times , the Lombardy Tour twice and the World Road Championship three times. He is the only rider who has won all three “Grand Tours”, all five monuments of cycling and the road world championship. However, he was tested positive for doping three times during his career .
In order to combat doping in cycling , the World Cycling Federation UCI only included binding anti-doping provisions in its regulations in 1966. After the first three winners of the Fleche Wallone ( Michele Dancelli , Lucien Aimar and Rudi Altig ) had evaded the doping control in the same year, an unannounced doping control took place for the first time at the 1966 Tour de France . The racing drivers went on strike against these measures at the next stage. The dangers of doping in cycling were later made drastically clear by a death: During the 1967 Tour , Tom Simpson died while climbing Mont Ventoux under the influence of amphetamines and alcohol .
At the 1998 Tour de France , the general public again became aware of systematic doping in road cycling. 400 ampoules of Epo and anabolic steroids were found in a car belonging to the French Festina team . After the team boss Bruno Roussel had confessed to organized doping within the team, the team was excluded from the tour after the fifth stage. In the course of the tour there were investigations against other teams in which several people were arrested. The drivers reacted to the treatment of their colleagues by the police with a strike on the 17th stage. The teams ONCE , Banesto , Riso Scotti , Kelme , Vitalicio Seguros and TVM-Farm Frites dropped out of the tour. The Italian Marco Pantani won the tour, but it was subsequently proven that he was doping with Epo.
In the run-up to the Tour de France 2006 , the biggest doping scandal in the history of road cycling became public. In the apartment of the Spanish doctor Eufemiano Fuentes , the police found 1,000 units of anabolic steroids, 100 bags of blood, blood manipulation agents and blood transfusion devices . Two days before the start of the tour, the Spanish radio station Cadena Ser published a list of 58 drivers who are said to have purchased doping substances from Fuentes. Among them were the Italian Ivan Basso and the German Jan Ullrich , the two favorites for the overall victory. A day later, the team bosses of the participating teams agreed that the suspected drivers would not compete and that no drivers could be nominated. As a result, the Spanish team Astana-Würth was excluded from the tour because they could not report the minimum number of six drivers. The US-American Floyd Landis won the tour, but he tested positive for doping with testosterone , so that the victory was subsequently revoked.
On June 12, 2012, the US anti-doping agency USADA charged Lance Armstrong , the record winner of the Tour de France, with doping. In blood samples from 2009 and 2010, doping with Epo or blood transfusions could be detected, and several former teammates, including Floyd Landis, accused Armstrong of years of doping. On August 24, the USADA revoked all titles since August 1, 1998 and imposed a life ban on him after he had declared that he would no longer want to defend himself before the arbitral tribunal. In a television interview broadcast on January 17, 2013, Armstrong confessed to Oprah Winfrey for the first time for years of doping with various substances. Thereupon the International Olympic Committee recognized him from the bronze medal in the individual time trial at the 2000 Olympic Games .
In a report published in March 2015 by a Cycling Independent Reform Commission appointed by the UCI, numerous violations by the UCI of the anti-doping regulations and of good governance principles during this period were pointed out.
The winner of a road bike race is basically the one who has covered a certain distance the fastest. But there are also forms of competition in which it depends on who crosses the finish line at a certain point and where. Points (see criterion ) and occasional time credits (see intermediate sprints in stage races ) are awarded. These are added up for criteria in the course of the race, added to or subtracted from the respective daily result in points or in the travel time for tours, but only taken into account in the overall result.
In road cycling, a large number of racing cyclists usually compete against each other. The competitions are organized for men and women. In road cycling organized by the member associations of the UCI , the races for male and female participants are carried out separately.
The main road cycling competitions are:
One-day races / road races
One- day races (also street races or one-way driving) are road bike races with a mass start in which the first rider to reach the destination is the winner. They are to be distinguished from the circuit races . They represent the oldest discipline in cycling. The length of one-day races can vary widely and, with a few exceptions, are no more than 250 kilometers. The oldest and most famous one-day races are called classics . One-day races can be combined into racing series with a common rating.
Circuit racing / criteria
In the case of criteria and circuit races , in contrast to the one-day races, a mostly inner-city circuit that has to measure between 800 meters and ten kilometers is driven. Circuit races with their short courses are particularly suitable in cities , since in contrast to normal one-day races, the effort involved in road closures is minimized. In this way, the spectators can experience the drivers up close several times and follow the course of the race live through the speaker on the track. Such races are often loosened up by award ratings, in which the winners of intermediate sprints can get cash or non-cash prizes.
One form of circuit racing is the so-called criteria, in which the winner does not have to be the driver who first crosses the finish line at the end of the race. For criteria, point evaluations take place at regular intervals (for example every five laps), in which the first four drivers usually receive 5, 3, 2 and one point. The winner is the driver who has the most points on his account at the end of the race. However, winning a lap takes precedence over these points, so that a driver who has not won a single rating can definitely win.
Individual and team time trials
The time trials are a special form of road cycling , in which either individual drivers ( individual time trials ) or entire teams ( team time trials ) start one after the other and the winner is determined by individual timekeeping. Time trials are often held as part of stage races or as part of national championships. Individual time trials are also part of the Olympic Games , team time trials were.
Stage races (round trips)
As a stage race events are called, where one after several days individual competitions - so-called stages - will be held to choose their respective results added in an Appreciation by time and summarizes it. Stage races that cover a country or region are often referred to as round trips . The Tour de France is considered the oldest and most famous stage race in the world . The individual stages consist of mass start races, which are carried out according to the rules for one-day races, individual and team time trials .
Other forms of competition are also organized, such as a. Race behind pacemaker leadership, mountain races and bike marathons . The latter are organized as individual and team competitions, one-day and multi-day events with distances of up to four-digit kilometers. The Race Across America , for example, is a form of multi-day non-stage race .
In popular sport, there are regular races for everyone - including one-day races - with up to five-digit numbers of participants.
In the UCI Continental Circuits , the categories are made up of two components separated by a point: The first number shows the type of race (1 = one-day race including time trial; 2 = stage race), the second number shows the importance of the race in descending order (HC = hors categorie, 1 = first category, 2 = second category), so category HC ( hors categorie French, except category ) was the highest. So called z. B. UCI Category 2.2 a stage race of the second category. If a race in the second category is reserved for U23 drivers , a U is added (e.g. 1.2U). With effect from October 23, 2018, the hors category was replaced by the UCI ProSeries (1st Pro and 2nd Pro).
In addition, further abbreviations are given for UCI road world championships (abbreviation CM , French for Championnat du monde ), Olympic cycling competitions (abbreviation JO , French for Jeux Olympiques ), continental championships (abbreviation CC , French for Championnats Continentaux ), regional games (abbreviation JR , French for Jeux Régionaux ) and national championships (abbreviation CN , French for Championnats Nationaux ).
The categorization of the races is a. of importance for the composition of the starting field and for the cycling rankings , such as the world ranking of men , the ranking lists of the Continental Circuits and the world ranking of women in road cycling .
In road cycling, a team is usually made up of riders who differ significantly in terms of their physique, their strengths and weaknesses as well as their goals and tasks. Even if not every driver can be clearly assigned to a certain category, experts often differentiate between the following driver types:
As a cruise specialist drivers are called, referring to the profit of stage races such as the "Grand Tours" ( Tour de France , Giro d'Italia , Vuelta a España specialize). You usually start as the team captain and are supported by the helpers of your team. To win a stage race, you have to be both a good climber and a good time trial, as the time gaps that are crucial for the overall standings are the largest on these stages. Good climbers are usually relatively easy, as this is the best way to minimize the downhill force, which is decisive on the mountain , while good time trialists are usually relatively aerodynamic, as the drag factor, which is decisive in the flat , can be minimized in the long term. Class drivers therefore have a body mass index of approx. 20–22 kg / m².
The following drivers have won the "Grand Tours" most often:
|Eddy Merckx *||11|
|Jacques Anquetil *||8th|
|Miguel Indurain *||7th|
|Alberto Contador *||7th|
As a Classics specialist drivers are called, referring to the profit of classics such as "monuments of cycling" ( Milan-San Remo , Tour of Flanders , Paris-Roubaix , Liege-Bastogne-Liege , Tour of Lombardy specialize). In these one-day races , they usually start as the team captain and are supported by their team's helpers, while in stage races they sometimes have to support their team themselves as helpers. In order to win a one-day race, you have to be both a good runaway and a good sprinter, as usually an outlier group can clear the field before the race is decided by the runaway group's sprint. Good outliers are usually relatively aerodynamic, as the braking factor air resistance, which is decisive in the flat, can be minimized in the long term, while good sprinters are usually relatively strong. Classic hunters therefore have a body mass index of approx. 21–23 kg / m².
The following riders have won the "Monuments of Cycling" most often:
|Eddy Merckx *||19th|
|Roger De Vlaeminck||11|
|Sean Kelly *||9|
As Sprinter drivers are called, referring to the profit of the race on flat terrain and points ratings are specialized. In races on flat terrain, they are usually supported by their team's helpers, while in races in mountainous terrain they sometimes have to support their team themselves as helpers. In order to win a race on flat terrain, you have to be able to reach a very high speed for a short time, as races on flat terrain are usually only decided on the home straight. Good sprinters are usually relatively strong, as the braking factor air resistance, which is decisive on the flat, can be minimized best in the short term. Sprinters therefore have a body mass index of approx. 22–23 kg / m².
The following drivers have won the "Grand Tours" point ratings most often:
|Erik Zabel *||9|
|Sean Kelly *||8th|
|Laurent Jalabert *||7th|
|Eddy Merckx *||6th|
As climbers drivers are called, referring to the profit of race in mountainous terrain and climbs specialize. In races in mountainous terrain, they are usually supported by their team's helpers, while in races in flat terrain they sometimes have to support their team themselves as helpers. In order to win a race in mountainous terrain, you have to be able to drive at high speed for a long time, as races in mountainous terrain are usually decided on the last climb. Good climbers are usually relatively easy, as this is the best way to minimize the downhill force that is decisive on the mountain. Climbers therefore have a body mass index of approx. 20–21 kg / m².
The following drivers have won the mountain ratings of the "Grand Tours" most often:
|Lucien Van Impe||8th|
|Richard virusesque *||7th|
|Julio Jiménez *||6th|
As time trial riders are called, referring to the profit of ITT as the world championship time trial specialize. In normal races they usually have to support their team as helpers. In order to win an individual time trial, you have to be able to drive at high speed for a long time, as individual time trials are decided over the entire route. Good time trialists are usually relatively aerodynamic, as the braking factor air resistance, which is decisive in the flat, can be minimized best in the long term. Time trial drivers therefore have a body mass index of approx. 21–22 kg / m².
The following drivers have won the world championship in the individual time trial most often:
|Michael Rogers *||3|
|Jan Ullrich *||2|
Helpers / domestics
Drivers who are subordinate to the success of their team are referred to as helpers or domestics . They provide their crew with food and drinks, donate the captain and their crew's specialists slipstream , bring them into an optimal starting position, lend them their bikes in the event of a defect, take part in breakaway attempts or pursue runaways from other teams.
Importance of road cycling
In Western and Central Europe, road cycling has remained popular since its inception until today. Cycling enjoys great popularity in France, Italy, Spain (especially in the Basque Country) and Switzerland, which is expressed in the major national tours of the Tour de France, Giro d'Italia , Vuelta a España and Tour de Suisse established here , as well as in Belgium (especially Flanders), Luxembourg and the Netherlands. Many important one-day races take place there, especially the so-called spring classics . Cycling and its idols are also very popular in other countries, such as Great Britain, Ireland, Poland, Slovakia and the Scandinavian countries.
Outside of Europe, the USA, Columbia and Australia should be mentioned, where road cyclists can become idols through success in the major European races. However, the UCI Road World Championships , which have been held since 1921, took place exclusively in European countries until 1976 and also after that.
In Germany, after the Second World War , cycling was a very popular sport , especially in the GDR . After Gustav-Adolf Schur won the world championship in the individual road race, the peace ride in particular as the “Tour de France des East” was followed enthusiastically and broadcast extensively on television. In the Federal Republic of Germany , cycling was particularly popular during the time of Rudi Altig and Dietrich Thurau .
After reunification, the successes of Erik Zabel and especially Jan Ullrich led to a temporary wedding in which three German professional teams managed to establish themselves in public at the Tour de France and thus beyond the stage of a marginal sport: Team T- Mobile , Team Gerolsteiner and Team Milram . After doping scandals, the German sponsors who gave the team their name withdrew from road cycling between 2007 and 2010. The T-Mobile team found a Californian successor, the Gerolsteiner team and the Milram team were completely dissolved.
The connection between the popularity of the sport and the existence of idols is made clear by the doubling of the market share of racing bikes in Germany after Jan Ullrich's Tour victory in 1997. At the same time, television coverage was expanded: while in 1995 only the third ARD programs reported the Tour de France every half hour , from 1998 to 2006 you could watch up to eight hours of cycling daily on Erste and ZDF .
In 2007, broad television coverage was discontinued for the first time during the Tour de France in response to Patrik Sinkewitz's positive A-sample doping result . Critics complain about the attitude of the ARD that the objectivity required of it as a public service broadcaster was not guaranteed due to its temporary role as sponsor of the tour.
- Johan Bruyneel with Bill Strickland: The Art of Victory. My success stories of eight victories in the Tour de France. Sportwelt Verlag , Betzenstein 2009, ISBN 978-3-941297-01-2 .
- Thomas Chapple: Basic training for cyclists. Sportwelt Verlag , Betzenstein 2008, ISBN 978-3-9811428-8-4 .
- Lynda Wallenfels: Bike training for triathletes and bike tour riders. Sportwelt Verlag , Betzenstein 2007, ISBN 978-3-9811428-3-9 .
- Official website of the UCI
- UCI regulations for road cycling (English, PDF)
- Official website of the BDR
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