• (L-R) John Degenkolb, Pascal Ackermann and Alexander Kristoff. (Getty)Source: Getty
German champion Pascal Ackermann gave the locals what they came for with a victory at the 57th edition of the Eschborn-Frankfurt Classic.
By
Cycling Central

2 May 2019 - 5:36 AM  UPDATED 2 May 2019 - 9:51 AM

It was Germany all the way with Ackerman's BORA-hansgrohe squad giving him a strong platform for the win ahead of compatriot John Degenkolb (Trek-Segafredo) and four-time winner, Alexander Kristoff (UAE Team Emirates).

“We came here to Frankfurt with a goal, and that was to take the win," Ackermann said. "It’s a great feeling to have finished it off.

"The guys rode at the front of the peloton the whole day, and in the end it was nice to be able to win.

"I was admittedly under quite some pressure today. We are a German team competing at a German race, and of course, we wanted to do everything we could to win.

"The team is in top form, and so we’re looking forward to the upcoming Giro d’Italia.”

The 187.5km looped race with a combined 3222 metres of climbing opened up with a group of seven clearing out of the main field to a well-controlled gap of four minutes.

The tough course took its toll and narrowed the break to just two riders with 80km remaining. The pair was bolstered with another small group bridging across but with the race always scheduled for a sprint the catch, which came inside the final five kilometres, was inevitable.

BORA-hansgrohe and Trek-Segafredo then did the work in driving the peloton to the finish with Ackerman timing his sprint perfectly to become the first rider in twenty years to win the race as the reigning German champion.

Pascal Ackermann post-race interview.