In a previous post we introduced you to Murray Cox, Laura Cook and Les Pegler, the three Cycling Plus readers who were lucky enough to be selected as riders for Team Alpecin 2018. Thanks to Alpecin they'll be getting the pro treatment as they train for L'Etape du Tour in July. It's an international squad, though, so here are the other riders joining the Brits on the journey to Annecy.


Andreas Barmettler, 44, Germany

Years Riding: 10


A decade ago Andreas borrowed an Italian steel bike from his father-in-law and was hooked. He’s conquered several gran fondos, including the Hamburg Cyclassics and the Ötztaler Bikemarathon, but classes himself as a sprinter!

Arne Hulstein, 41, Netherlands

Years Riding: 1


Arne started riding to lose weight and battle stress. He’s new to cycling, but does have a passion for two- wheeled motorised bikes. He confirmed our stereotypical view of the Netherlands as completely flat, which he admits isn’t ideal for Étape training!

Tim Schneider, 33, Germany

Years Riding: 3


Last year Tim completed the Rapha Festive500 – riding 500km between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve. He rides around Berlin with teammates from the Standert Bicycle Shop and Café, in the velodrome or on his turbo. Sadly, an incident with a dog while riding means that Tim is currently out of action with broken bones…

Frank Siepker, 43, Germany

Years Riding: 10


Frank was selected for the 2014 Team Alpecin squad but couldn’t take his place. It was worth the wait as Frank can now help editor Rob expand his German vocabulary and drag him up the climbs! (He doesn’t know this is his designated role yet…)

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Marina Sonzogni, 41, Italy

Years Riding: 7


Marina jumped into the cycling deep end when she took part in a 24-hour race back in 2011 with little riding experience. It didn’t put her off and, in fact, Marina is now a proper long-distance rider, notching up more than 12,000km per year.

Stefano Teodoro, 32, Italy

Years Riding: 4


Stefano started riding fixies to work to avoid being stuck in traffic. For fun, he rode the 100-mile loop of Lake Como on a singlespeed, which developed his passion for long distance rides, with several audaxes under his belt.

Nora Turner, 23, Austria

Years Riding: 1


Nora started cycling in summer 2017. Her first ride was more than 100km – on a rental bike she rode from Vienna to Lake Neusiedl and back. After Nora’s first ride she still, apparently, had enough energy left to party at a concert. And she's an avid Instagrammer too! Youngsters

Marcus Vohwinkel, 49, Germany

Years Riding: 20


Markus will have plenty of motivation to train for the Étape – he’s got a super-strong training partner in his 18-year-old son. Markus’s wife is also a keen rider and they’ve headed to Hawaii for 20 years on cycling holidays.

Madeleine Vogel, 31, Germany

Years Riding: 3


Madeleine is proof that Bielefeld exists as she lives there! (Check out the Bielefeld conspiracy…) Her early saddle-based experience came on horses. She discovered cycling in 2014 after a trip to Majorca with her bike mechanic boyfriend.

And then there's this bloke…

Rob Spedding, 45, England

Years Riding: 18


Cycling Plus editor Rob started riding 'seriously' to commute and cross train for running in the late 1990s. He hasn't actually got much better and has failed to finish La Marmotte, taken on the short version of the Maratona dles Dolomites, and struggled around the Fred Whitton. He plans to finish the Etape.

Images: Henning Angerer


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