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2013-07-15

Hälden Rennen, German Nationals

 

By the end of May 2013, the German Nationals were scheduled in Hälden, Southern Germany. Although „wrongly“ spelled, Hälden means heroes in German (Helden), which is why this race is referred to as the heroes´ race. The track is not particularly fast with a top speed around 60-ish, but it´s narrow and bears one decisive section with a very tight s-curve that follows a longer straight on which the abovementioned top speed is reached. Four men heats on the narrow track are challenging and great fun. At the arrival, heavy rain, which, as we would learn, would last for two consecutive days and transform the campsite into a mud pit, which was a worthy representative of a small Woodstock festival.

The race was run as a race-to-quali in all categories (open, women, juniors, buttboard) allowing all riders to gather points in four men heats, which would then generate a 64 men bracket. Women (13) and juniors (12) were all directly qualified for the race day on Saturday but qualified nevertheless to determine race heats. The entire qualification race was run in the rain, but fortunately race day meant dry conditions and even sun was to be seen…

Numerous DTCs were seen on the track and, to anticipate things, later on the podium. But let´s proceed step-by-step. DTC team rider Jakob Raab raced the open class, which was comprised of a strong starter grid including last year´s German champion Sebastian Hertler, Leon Ritter, Dutch young gun Deen Mondt (who actually is still a junior), and a bunch of impressive newcomers from southern Germany and Austria. Jakob made his way through every heat in a very strong and solid manner to eventually end up in the finals!

 

In the final heat, Sebastian Hertler demonstrated his skills and entered the key section in the S-curve in first followed by Austrian Newcomer Quirin Ilmer in second and Jakob in third. Dutch rider Deen Mondt completed the final heat and was, at that time in fourth position. Quirin, who competed his first race, scrubbed a tad too much speed in his slide before the S-curve, which resulted in a super tight situation with Quirin slowing down a bit too much and Jakob right back him in the first left. In the following right curve, riders had slight contact and Quirin ended up in the hay bales. Tight race situation! However both riders discussed the point and agreed that´s simply racing! From there on, things with set. Sebastian Hertler won the German nationals and Jakob took an impressive second place. Congrats man! Deen Mondt took second after Quirin´s crash, who finished in a strong fourth place.


On the podium f.l.t.r.: Deen Mondt, Sebastian Hertler, Jakob Raab, Quirin Ilmer


In the juniors´ division, DTC team rider Lenny Gires picked up the challenge to repeat a podium, as he did last year with a third place. 2013 meant great changes in material for Lenny, who only kept DTCs as an invariable and moved to Rayne Longboards and Ronin trucks. Far shorter wheelbase and a very different feel with respect to trucks. During race-to-quali things could have been far better for him and he only managed to place in 9th from the attending junior riders. Here, last year´s champ Lukas Übelhör demonstrated his dominance again and finished race-to-quali at an undefeated first place.


Lenny Gires in the S-curve, quarter finals. (Pic: Nihat Uysal)

Race day, dry conditions, fresh victory grips and with a quiet mind Lenny started his quarter finals with a very strong push to let his opponents back him. First round done and won. Semi-finals, strong push again and a solid win again… Things turned into a very positive race compared to the quali and smiles came back as well! So it was the second DTC team rider in a final. Here, we found without any surprise Lukas Übelhör and two riders from Stuttgart with Adrian Wersching and Pedro Dederer, who was with 13 the youngest in the field! Start: Lukas pushes even harder than Lenny, so it´s Lukas in front followed by Lenny, Adrian and Pedro. Already in the first curve, Lenny was pretty close to Lukas who pushed out of the turn and kept his lead. Things might happen in the S-curve, as it always does… There Lenny picks up enough momentum to sneak through the inner side and takes over Lukas, but only for a short time as Lukas pushes out of the turn and gets into the lead again on the last straight. Super tight racing with both, Adrian and Pedro, closely behind. In the end, Lukas wins his deserved second German title in a row and Lenny crosses the finish line in a slightly unexpected second position. Congrats again and superb racing from those fast juniors!


Finals Junior division: Lukas Übelhör (left) leads Lenny Gires (right) in the S-curve. (Pic: Gordon Timpen)

 

Annemieke Wenting from the Netherlands won the Women´s division on DTC Geckos and showed impressive skating the entire weekend. Women´s German champion was the super likeable Tina Zobel, who was part of the organisation of the event.

Thanks to the entire orga team for this beautiful event, which was run very well despite incredibly bad weather conditions!

Thanks from the entire DTC family!

 

 

 

 

 

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