“This was my third attendance at Ironman Frankfurt”, Denmark’s Kristian Hogenhaug starts an Instagram post in which he compares racing in Frankfurt as an age grouper to racing as a pro athlete. Last Sunday, Hogenhaug claimed an impressive second place at the European Championship in Frankfurt after he took some risk by escaping the pack in the second part of the bike leg. “I raced here two times as an amateur (2013 and 2016) and one time in the pro rankings (2021). The difference in race ‘dynamics’ is huge. As an age grouper, the focus was mainly on my own numbers and trying to ride as steadily as possible over the entire course, and not digging into the glycogen stores too often. Yesterday as a pro it played out differently…”
To leave his competitors behind, Denmark’s top cyclist had to go dig deep. “I tried to break the group a couple of times and burned a few matches…without success. I decided that I had nothing to lose and surged one last time – a really hard effort (1.5 min at 480 watts). It paid off, I broke away and could settle into a steady pace for the remaining ride.” Hogenhaug ended up racking his bike in first place with an eight-minute advantage on the pack. In the final kilometers of the run, he saw Sweden’s Patrik Nilsson fly by and getting away with the win. That meant Hogenhaug settled for a strong second place.
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