Today Alban Lakata, the leader of the Topeak-Ergon Team, got the best birthday present he could imagine. Just in time for his 38th birthday he took the win at the marathon world championships in Singen, Germany. In the winning time of 3 hours 17 minutes he left the whole field of favourites behind and won the race in a spectacular sprint against last year's world champion. Tiago Ferreira.
Photographer Markus Greber and filmer Christian Walter visited Alban a couple of weeks ago in his hometown of Lienz, Austria to document the home life of of the marathon world champion.
Cupping is very helpful for me… It´s painful for nearly everyone, but not for me; it's only when I've had a big break from cupping that I have to get used to it again. Normally I do this once a week with my masseuse. She´s really a 'herb witch;' makes a lot of creams and stuff by herself. Michaela is my 'fairy godmother' and knows nearly all about me - so she´s my physio - and also psychotherapist at the same time.
This interval is a new one. I do it for the World Championships, because there are many of those parts in Singen. I don´t know if I'm able to do it today… We will see.
Testing stuff is a big part for me, as I`m a very technically interested guy. Testing new types of tires is a big point, because a fast or grippy tire can decide the final results. I test them on my home trails because I can really feel the differences there - I know every stone and root so I really can ride at the highest level for the test.
Ice cream and Cappuccino in the city of Lienz after a hard training is one of my vices…When the weather is fine, I can´t resist.
Quality time with the family. After a tough day of training, it´s the biggest pleasure for me, spending time with my family. Riding a local track at the river Isel in Lienz is one of the highlights for all of us. At the beach we throw stones into the Isel and build sandcastles with Fabian.
I love the Tristachersee - the water is clear and so refreshing after the training. Often I also come here in the afternoon just to relax and cool down.
Changing tires. I have to be familiar with my bikes and I have to know all about the technology. That´s why I decided to integrate an in-home workshop when we built the house.
In the summertime one of my hobbies is my home and my garden. It is a pleasure for to get herbs and salad from my raised bed, have a barbecue at my terrace with family and friends and grill some good food. Also, the garden work like watering and cutting the grass is something to calm down.
Training session in my own gym at home. I also have a sauna and outside shower. 2-3 days a week I´m here for about 1-2 hours.
I always try to be multitasking. Electro stimulation for recovery on the couch and in the meantime doing some office work or watching cycling on TV.
Pizza time - against all the advice from specialists some shit has to be done… I love pizza and I don´t want to miss it. So normally Friday is my pizza day. Sometimes I meet also my teammate Sally and our manager Dave at the restaurant…
My legs are my capital… hard training until they looked like this. Now they do nearly 500 watts 8 times over 5 minutes. I count on them for the Worlds.
Your 2017 Marathon World Champion, Alban Lakata. Photo: Armin Kustenbruck