The German Adelheid Morath and Colombian Hector Leonardo Paez defended their overall lead on the fourth and final stage of the 25th Alpentour Trophy.  Michael Holland finished as the best Austrian in 14th place at the anniversary edition.

“I’m really happy, had the best legs, and am very pleased with the success because it was a really tough tour,” said the overall winner, who had already won the four-day race in the Schladming-Dachstein region last year. In the final time trial, the two-time marathon world champion and dominator of the last few days was not at the front, but second place in the final mountain time trial was enough for the 40-year-old to secure the overall victory at the 25th Alpentour Trophy.

Paez had to relinquish the stage win in the final to another rider: Czech Filip Rydval beat him by 42 seconds over the 11 kilometers, setting a new ascent record to the Schafalm with a time of 45 minutes and 7 seconds. This secured him not only second place in the overall standings but also the mountain jersey.

Michael Holland took home the Energie Steiermark jersey for the best Austrian. “I’m positively surprised because my preparation was not optimal, so I came with no great expectations. Today was really tough again, in the morning when I got up, my bones felt heavy. Given that, I’m really satisfied. And maybe next year, I’ll get the Alpentour jersey.”

Morath wins on debut

Fourth place in the final mountain time trial was enough for German Adelheid Morath to defend her lead in the overall women’s elite standings, crowning herself the winner of the four-day stage race at her Alpentour debut after three stage wins. “I’m overjoyed, even though I wasn’t really focused on winning. It’s even nicer that it was enough in the end because the stages were incredibly tough, especially the first three,” she explained.

The stage win in the individual time trial up to the Schafalm went to Czech Milena Kalašovà, who had finished second three times in the previous days and claimed the well-deserved stage victory on Sunday on the Planai. Second place went to German Lea Kremsreiter, and third place to Stefanie Zahno from Switzerland. Claudia Krenn was the fastest Austrian, finishing in 10th place.

Former ski jumper Andreas Goldberger and his duo partner Bernhard Kraft took 1:11:01 hours for the 11-kilometer climb from Schladming to the Schafalm. “It was really tough today, but Berni pulled me up. We knew it would be exhausting, but I had forgotten how brutal it was,” Goldberger panted after his third Alpentour finish overall, but his first in the duo competition.

The organizers Regina Stanger and Gerhard Schönbacher were more than satisfied after the final stage: “Many thanks to everyone who contributed and congratulations to all participants. The anniversary edition far exceeded our expectations, with numbers soaring. We had about 150 more participants, the new One Day Alpentour Marathon was very well received, and the City Sprint was a huge success. These are special gifts for a 25-year anniversary.”

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