John Degenkolb

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Second at Paris-Roubaix

2014-04-13

What a day. I had looked forward to this race so much and now I am overjoyed by second place. After Terpstra had gone, I got the most out of myself. I convinced myself that it was like going for the win and I was fully focussed on the sprint. That is why I rejoiced so much at the finish. If we had caught Terpstra, then another one from Omega would have gone, and that is why I didn't force the chase. They were simply in a better position.

Of course it is bitter to have so closely missed out on winning the cobblestone and it hurts a little to see someone else raise it into the air. But I had these thoughts only briefly. I was second in Roubaix. Crazy. I am 25 and can already look forward to everything the figure might bring. There is still a lot possible, I noticed that today. The years bring experience, such as knowing when it is better to move your ass and when it is better not to, in order to save some strength.

I concentrated on having a good position and fortunately also had the legs to be able to go with Vanmarcke and Cancellara when they picked up the pace. We presented ourselves really well as a team today. Thank you. That was a tremendous team performance, everyone was strong. We fought for that second place together. It is too bad for Koen that he was handicapped by two punctures and couldn't come back. But that just happens in this race.

I am also happy that I was able to come back after a mechanical. I had to change my bike entirely and wait a long time. The chain got caught in the chain rings, and when I pedaled, the whole thing ripped apart, that is, the large chain ring separated from the screws. Talk about brute force.... Well, I tried to put then chain back on and saw the problem. There was nothing to do, it was just split and twisted metal.

Now I feel fine. I am happy and nothing hurts. Nikias, for example, can't say that. He has two huge blood blisters on his hands. It really is a ride through hell. But he played a large role and did a lot to bring me back up after my mechanical.

We will drink another toast now and then I will surely be soon in bed. I'll be back in contact soon.

Photos: roth-foto.de
140413_roubaix1   140413_roubaix2   140413_roubaix3

Further News

We did our best

2014-04-06

What a slaughter. As expected, it was a hard battle for every meter and for every cobble on every one of the 17 Hellinge. And even if the result doesn't necessarily reflect it: I am satisfied with the race and the matter in which I and my team presented ourselves. Dries and I were amongst the best.

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The Quiet before the Storm

2014-04-05

Two hour easy training, massage, team meeting, dinner – the day before the "Ronde" is all planned out but relaxing is the most important thing. It is literally the quiet before the storm. Slowly, the excitement for the Tour of Flanders is growing.

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I have achieved my goal

2014-03-30

With today's win in Gent-Wevelgem, the Classics season is already a total success for me. I have achieved my goal and anything else that might come will just be a bonus. It is a great feeling to win a Classic. I feel wonderful.

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I've never been so disappointed

2014-03-24

Emptiness, disappointment, futility. I just can't find the right words to express how I felt when I realized that my front tire was flat. A puncture at the foot of the Poggio destroyed my dreams. I think that there is no dam.... excuse me, darned worse moment in this race than there to puncture.

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Taking home the green jersey from Paris-Nice

2014-03-16

Short and painful! - That's the best way to describe the only 130 kilometer long but difficult stage today. Oh yes and one more thing: it was successful for me too. I wore the green jersey to Nice and could again represent our team at the winners' ceremony.

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Stopped by the chain

2014-03-13

Today I really fought to get on to the podium. I could have had the yellow jersey back. I bore down hard and survived the climbs in the first group. Unfortunately then a stiff link in the chain put an end to it all. It cracked terribly on every other pedal rotation.

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Losing yellow by three seconds

2014-03-12

In the end I lacked three seconds in order to defend yellow. It is annoying that it was so close. Now I just have to pull myself together and try it all again. But I have nothing to blame myself for, I gave my all and the guys rode themselves practically into a coma for me. Once again many thanks for the support.

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Stage win at the third attempt

2014-03-11

What a relief! After two attempts, it finally worked out with the stage win today. The guys set me up perfectly for the sprint. It couldn't have been any better! It was enormous fun to race over the motor course at full speed – close to the curbs, the knees nearly on the asphalt, like a motorcyclist. It was fantastic.

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Where is the Replay button?

2014-03-10

Today's finish photo says it all. You can read my exact thoughts from the moment that I was beat: Oh shit! Not again. Can't someone hit the Replay button? Start it all over again and this time I will do it right! - But life doesn't work that way. I lost my chance.

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Paris-Nice: Second on 1st stage

2014-03-09

A few more centimeters and a little bit more oomph, and I could have won the first stage of Paris-Nice. But with my training pause I can live with the second place behind Nacer Bouhanni. I didn't really feel totally fit today. You just need a little time to make the transition from training to racing modus.

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Some good music before Paris-Nice

2014-03-07

Tomorrow morning I am off to Paris-Nice. After my training block on Mallorca, I am looking forward to racing again. But before I leave, I am relaxing today with my record collection – I got some new ones today. There will be some good music to hear tonight.

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