A pure sprinter, for Max Walscheid bike racing is about speed and what he can do in the last 200 metres. In 2018, he won a stage of the Tour de Yorkshire, completed his first Grand Tour, the Vuelta a España, finished second in a stage of the Tour of California and won Sparkassen Müsterland Giro, to add to a stage win at the Tour of Denmark in 2017.
The 25-year-old originally did athletics, before his father and best friend got him into cycling. What was initially mountain biking for fun, became road racing for victories.
He joined the team as a stagiare in 2015, after seeing the number of German riders who have developed from their structure. Now, four seasons later, he is an integral part of Team Sunweb’s sprinting prowess, despite joking teammates would describe him simply as “tall and heavy”.
Competitive, ambitious and sociable, with an eagerness to improve, Max can put the sport in perspective, using defeats and bad days on the bike as motivation to be better.
Off the bike, he enjoys spending time with his supportive girlfriend and family who feel most acutely the sacrifices a bike rider makes, and also see first-hand how dangerous the life of a sprinter can be: “For my girlfriend and my family, it is very hard. They wish me all the best but also see me pushing 100 percent into a sprint. They are good at that balance.”
Max, who played violin and trumpet when he was younger, is studying medicine in his home city Heidelberg, putting it on hold for now until after his cycling career. Off the bike, he enjoys spending time with his family dog, drinking coffee in city centre cafes, listening to music, and is a big part of the fixie bike riding scene.