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Jan’s Journal: Now the real Tour begins!

Hello from Germany,Unfortunately today was not the beautiful summer weather we might have hoped for as the Tour came into our home countrytoday. Still, the crowds were huge and we could see them lining the roads in the distance as we crossed the Rhine into Germany. The reception was remarkable and I would, on behalf of the team, like to thank all of you who turned out to welcome the Tour, and specifically the Germans in the peloton, back home. It’s days like this that make the effort really worth it. The day was a bit hectic at times. Vino barely avoided a crash at one point today and the

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By Jan Ullrich, T-Mobile professional cycling team

The road ahead: Stage 8- Pforzheim to Gerardmer, 231.5km

The road ahead: Stage 8- Pforzheim to Gerardmer, 231.5km

Photo:

Hello from Germany,
Unfortunately today was not the beautiful summer weather we might have hoped for as the Tour came into our home countrytoday. Still, the crowds were huge and we could see them lining the roads in the distance as we crossed the Rhine into Germany.

The reception was remarkable and I would, on behalf of the team, like to thank all of you who turned out to welcome the Tour, and specifically the Germans in the peloton, back home. It’s days like this that make the effort really worth it.

The day was a bit hectic at times. Vino barely avoided a crash at one point today and the rest of us were just lucky to be out of the way on others, including that mess at the finish that fortunately only took out three riders, as McEwen earned a stage win in Karlsruhe. It was clearly not the sort of stage that suits me, but I sure would have liked to see a German win here today. I am glad that Fabian Wegmann earned the climber’s jersey. From the sounds of it, the crowd was happy, as well.

Our team bus was completely surrounded by fans as we finished today. I feel bad that I wasn’t able to fulfill all of the autograph requests, but I think I might still be there if I had tried.

Tomorrow we start in Pforzheim and hopefully the weather will be a little better than today. Either way, it’ll be another huge turnout and a large celebration!

As the stage starts out hard right away – with four Category 3 climbs over 40km – we will surely see another early attack. Of course, after that it will be flat for 140km before the big (Category 2 Col de la Schlucht) near the finish. It’s there where all of the favorites will be particularly watchful.

Now the Tour really starts and we are ready!
Until then
Jan