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Eschborn–Frankfurt, previously Rund um den Henninger Turm Frankfurt, is an annual semi classic cycling race in Germany, starting in Eschborn and finishing in Frankfurt. The event, sometimes referred to as the Frankfurt Grand Prix, is held annually on 1 May, national Labour Day in Germany.

Eschborn–Frankfurt
Rennen Henninger Turm.jpg
Peloton during the race in Kronberg im Taunus
Date1 May
RegionHesse, Germany
English nameEschborn-Frankfurt - Lap of the Finanzplatz
DisciplineRoad
CompetitionUCI World Tour
TypeOne-day
OrganiserASO
Web sitewww.eschborn-frankfurt.de Edit this at Wikidata
First edition1962 (1962)
Editions58 (as of 2019)
First winner Armand Desmet (BEL)
Most wins Alexander Kristoff (NOR)
(4 wins)
Most recent Pascal Ackermann (GER)

As from 2017, Eschborn–Frankfurt is part of the UCI World Tour,[1] the highest-rated professional men's road races, making it the second German World Tour event, together with the Hamburg Cyclassics in August. The event is organised by ASO.

HistoryEdit

The event was first held on 1 May, 1962, as Rund um den Henninger Turm Frankfurt, starting and finishing in Frankfurt's city centre. Brothers Hermann and Erwin Moos sought to promote the Henninger Tower, a grain silo belonging to the Henninger Brewery, which opened in 1961. Henninger served as main sponsor of the cycling event from the inaugural race until 2008. Rund um den Henninger Turm received a status upgrade in 1967 when Paris–Brussels, organised in late April, was removed from the calendar due to traffic problems and the event became the pre-eminent one-day cycling race in West Germany.

 
The now demolished Henninger Tower (pictured in 2005) in Frankfurt am Main served as the race's name sponsor from 1962 until 2008.

The race's first winner was Belgian Armand Desmet in 1962. Barry Hoban became the first British winner in 1966 after a 50 km solo ride to the finish, holding the chasing pack at one minute. Legendary cyclist Eddy Merckx won the race solo in 1971. Sprinter Erik Zabel held the record for most victories in the race with three (1999, 2002 and 2005) until Alexander Kristoff in 2018 added a fourth victory to his 2014, 2016 and 2017 wins, and therefore becoming sole record-holder. Seven further riders have won twice.

In 1995, Rund um den Henninger Turm was part of the UCI Road World Cup, cycling's season-long competition of the most important one-day races in the 1990s. The fixed date of the event however, every 1 May, was considered unfavourable as it was often midweek, and it was replaced with the newly-created HEW Cyclassics in Hamburg as the German leg of the series.

In 2008, organiser Bernd Moos stated Henninger would withdraw its sponsorship of the race. Henninger discontinued its funding after 46 years because of economic conditions.[2] The event continued in 2009 as the Eschborn–Frankfurt City Loop, named after its city sponsors, Frankfurt and the neighboring town of Eschborn, which also became the start location of the race.[3][4] The iconic Henninger Tower was demolished in 2013.

The 2015 event was cancelled on the eve of the race due to a suspected terrorist plot.[5] In 2017, Eschborn–Frankfurt was included in the UCI World Tour, cycling's highest rated professional events, and organisation was taken on by ASO, which also organises cycling's flagships, the Tour de France and Paris–Roubaix.[6]

 
Route of the 2011 event. The race starts in Eschborn and finishes in Frankfurt's city centre, totaling around 220 km, mainly through the Taunus Hills.

RouteEdit

The race passes through the Taunus Hills west of Frankfurt, along a winding and hilly course with around 1500m (5,000 feet) of climbing. The climbs of the Feldberg, Ruppershain and Mammolshain are some of the regular features. The Mammolshain has a maximal gradient of 26% and is climbed twice in the race. The race ends with three laps of 4,5 km in the centre of Frankfurt, covering a total distance of around over 220 kilometres (140 mi).[7]

Until 2008 the start and finish of the race was on Hainer Weg and later Darmstädter Landstraße, in front of the Henninger Tower.

Since the event's restyling in 2009, the race starts in Eschborn, 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) west of Frankfurt – the finish was at the housing development Riedberg. Since 2010, the finish is in front of the Alte Oper (Old Opera), Frankfurt's concert hall and former opera house in the city centre.

Race winnersEdit

 
Erik Zabel (pictured in 2005) has won the race three times (1999, 2002 and 2005).
Year Country Rider Team
1962   Belgium Armand Desmet Flandria–Faema–Clément
1963   Germany Hans Junkermann Wiel's-Groene Leeuw
1964   Belgium Clément Roman Flandria-Roméo
1965   France Jean Stablinski Ford France-Gitane
1966   Great Britain Barry Hoban Mercier-BP-Hutchinson
1967   Belgium Daniel Van Rijckeghem Mann-Grundig
1968   Netherlands Eddy Beugels Mercier-BP-Hutchinson
1969   Belgium Georges Pintens Mann-Grundig
1970   Germany Rudi Altig G.B.C.-Zimba
1971   Belgium Eddy Merckx Molteni
1972   France Gilbert Bellone Rokado
1973   Belgium Georges Pintens Rokado-De Gribaldy
1974   Belgium Walter Godefroot Carpenter–Confortluxe–Flandria
1975   Netherlands Roy Schuiten TI–Raleigh
1976   Belgium Freddy Maertens Flandria-Velda
1977   Netherlands Gerrie Knetemann TI–Raleigh
1978   Germany Gregor Braun Peugeot-Esso-Michelin
1979   Belgium Daniel Willems Ijsboerke-Warncke Eis
1980   Italy Gianbattista Baronchelli Bianchi-Piaggio
1981   Belgium Jos Jacobs Capri Sonne
1982   Belgium Ludo Peeters TI–Raleigh–Campagnolo
1983   Belgium Ludo Peeters TI–Raleigh–Campagnolo
1984   Australia Phil Anderson Panasonic–Raleigh
1985   Australia Phil Anderson Panasonic–Raleigh
1986   Belgium Jean-Marie Wampers Hitachi-Splendor
1987   Norway Dag Otto Lauritzen 7 Eleven
1988   Belgium Michel Dernies Lotto-Eddy Merckx
1989   Belgium Jean-Marie Wampers Panasonic–Isostar–Colnago–Agu
1990    Switzerland Thomas Wegmüller Weinmann-SMM Uster
1991   Belgium Johan Bruyneel Lotto
1992   Belgium Frank Van Den Abeele Lotto–Mavic–MBK
1993   Denmark Rolf Sørensen Carrera Jeans–Tassoni
1994   Germany Olaf Ludwig Team Telekom
1995   Italy Francesco Frattini Gewiss–Ballan
1996    Switzerland Beat Zberg Carrera Jeans–Tassoni
1997   Italy Michele Bartoli MG Maglificio–Technogym
1998   Italy Fabio Baldato Riso Scotti–MG Maglificio
1999   Germany Erik Zabel Team Telekom
2000   Germany Kai Hundertmarck Team Telekom
2001    Switzerland Markus Zberg Rabobank
2002   Germany Erik Zabel Team Telekom
2003   Italy Davide Rebellin Gerolsteiner
2004   Netherlands Karsten Kroon Rabobank
2005   Germany Erik Zabel T-Mobile Team
2006   Italy Stefano Garzelli Liquigas
2007   Germany Patrik Sinkewitz T-Mobile Team
2008   Netherlands Karsten Kroon Team CSC
2009   Germany Fabian Wegmann Team Milram
2010   Germany Fabian Wegmann Team Milram
2011   Germany John Degenkolb HTC–Highroad
2012   Italy Moreno Moser Liquigas–Cannondale
2013   Slovenia Simon Špilak Team Katusha
2014   Norway Alexander Kristoff Team Katusha
2015 No race due to suspected terrorist plot [5]
2016   Norway Alexander Kristoff Team Katusha
2017   Norway Alexander Kristoff Team Katusha–Alpecin
2018   Norway Alexander Kristoff UAE Team Emirates
2019   Germany Pascal Ackermann Bora–Hansgrohe

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "The UCI reveals expanded UCI WorldTour calendar for 2017". uci.ch. UCI. Retrieved 7 April 2017.
  2. ^ Official website. Announces withdrawal of Henninger Bräu AG as main sponsors.
  3. ^ (New) official website. Announces new name and main sponsors. (in German)
  4. ^ Cyclingnews report in English
  5. ^ a b "Rund um Finanzplatz Eschborn-Frankfurt cancelled after police thwart possible terrorist action". Cyclingnews.com. Future plc. 30 April 2015. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  6. ^ "UCI expands WorldTour to 37 events". cyclingnews.com. Immediate Media Company. Retrieved 7 April 2017.
  7. ^ "Strecke Elite". eschborn-frankfurt.de. Archived from the original on 8 April 2017. Retrieved 7 April 2017.