They have done it again, the German professional mountain bike team won the world championship title at the World Championships in Indonesia with their French rider Titouan Perrin-Ganier.
One might expect that the World Championships in Palangkaraya, Indonesia, produced mixed feelings within the Mountainbike Racingteam. The German medal favorites Marion Fromberger and Simon Gegenheimer were both in the final with very strong performances, both fell and yet both were happy at the finish. The background to this was the title win by French teammate Titouan Perrin-Ganier. He took over the role of leader within seconds, attacked immediately after Gegenheimer's fall and continued at the front of the field to the finish. “It's unbelievable, we're world champions again, as a team. When Simon fell in the rock-garden, it was clear to me that I couldn't hesitate for a second and it was now up to me to win the title for us," said the now 6-time world champion Perrin-Ganier, who thanked his Racingteam and his family: “This is the foundation that gives me strength for all the hard training and the resulting successes”.
For the two highly publicized German co-favorites Marion Fromberger and Simon Gegenheimer, instead of the champagne shower at the finish, they first had to go to the hospital. The open wound on Gegenheimer’s arm required 12 stitches. “I was only focused on winning the title for our Racingteam, we achieved that. No question, it's a humbling feeling to fall in the lead 400 meters from the world championship title. But I'm not disappointed, my arm will be okay again quickly, we did it and are keeping the rainbow jersey in the Racingteam," said Gegenheimer in the ARD interview. He was extremely confident until his crash, rode tactically cleverly in the humid 36 C°, saved energy and was able to contest the final on the technically demanding natural course in Indonesia from the front. His team boss Steffen Thum is also satisfied despite the Germans' fall: “We are rewarded for investing so much in ourselves as a one-team. We have a strong backbone, support each other and can therefore guarantee success for us as a team, even in difficult situations. Titouan accepted at the start today that Simon was stronger, secured his rear wheel and gave him great support. After the fall, he was able to switch within a fraction of a second, attacked, jumped into Simon's position as team leader and won us the world championship title. This shows Titouan not just as an outstanding professional cyclist, it proofs him as a great champion of mountain biking.”
Marion Fromberger was also happy for the Racingteam and in the subsequent press conference referred to the necessary steps to be taken: “I have to learn, learn, learn from my teammates and work my way forward step by step. In 2023 I took another important step forward, but I'm not ready to become world champion yet. I hope I have reached this level in Aalen in 2024,” said Fromberger after the World Championship race in Indonesia, which she finished in fourth place. The winner was the Italian dominator Gaia Tormena.