With no races on the go we thought we’d give you some of that ‘retro’ stuff – here’s a big name from the ‘80’s. Rolf Gölz says he wasn’t really a track rider but won World and Olympic silver medal in the Individual Pursuit and Worlds gold in the Team Pursuit; he wasn’t a specialist ‘chronoman’ but won the pan-flat and super-fast Firenze-Pistoia TT and the prestigious Trofeo Baracchi two man TT; he wasn’t a climber but won Flèche-Wallonne, conquering the mighty Mur de Huy; he wasn’t a pure sprinter but could get the better of the likes of Etienne De Wilde and Sean Kelly in a sprint.
And he just missed the podium in the Worlds Road Race but did make the podium in Milan-Sanremo.
No wonder they nicknamed him ‘Turbo’. We had the pleasure of a chat with the man from Germany who’s perhaps one of his generation’s most under-rated riders.
Why did they call you ‘Turbo,’ Rolf?
“That came from the days when I was an amateur riding team pursuit, the other guys called me that because I could accelerate so fast.”
You rode for West Germany in your pursuiting days; I saw you take silver behind the late Detlef Macha of East Germany at Leicester in 1982 – how real was the rivalry with the East Germans?
“It was for real, it was a big battle between two different systems – we didn’t communicate with their pursuit riders; relations with their sprinters were better but in the track centre there was no communication.”