Jan Ullrich: Cycling
Jan Ullrich (born 2 December 1973) is a former German professional cyclist who won both gold and silver at the 2000 Summer Olympics. He is considered one of the best time trialists ever. He first won his bicycle race when he was only nine years old. In 1994, he turned professional for the Telekom (T-Mobile now) team under Walter Godefroot.
Greatest Sporting Achievements
Aside from winning two medals at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, he also won four medals at the World Championships. In 1997, Ullrich was the first German racing cyclist to win the Tour de France and was the second-youngest ever winner of the Tour de France. In 1996, 1998, 2000, 2001 and 2003, Jan Ullrich has been second in the Tour de France. He also won Vuelta a Espana, Tour de Suisse, World Time Trial, Amateur World Race Cycling, National Road Race Champion twice, Olympic Road RaceVattenfall Cyclassics and Rund um Koln. In 1997, Jan Ullrich was named German Sportsman of the Year.
Why Was He So Good?
Ullrich was a gifted cyclist – he could time trial, bridge big gaps all by himself and sprint like his bike was also an extension of his body. He could simply blow a major race apart with his specialized climbing skills. Jan Ullrich was known for having one of his finest poker faces when the roads went up; setting a façade in any case he was under pressure or was easily and effortlessly taking things in his pace.
What You May Not Know
- Jan Ullrich was often criticized for gaining weight during off-season. He wasn’t training as much as he should.
- Lance Armstrong saw Ullrich as his strongest competitor.
- In 2006, he came under suspicion of doping and was banned from the Tour.
- He announced his retirement from cycling in February 2007 and stated that he never cheated as a cyclist.
Was he a legend?
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