10 QUESTIONS A MATTIA ZOLI WINNER OF THE “LAST MAN STANDING 2018”
1) What did it feel like to cut the finish line of the Rad Race Berlin (in its particular setting)? Being the first to cut the finish line was fantastic! I still can’t believe it… It was like a rush of adrenaline and the emotions I felt are hard to describe! It was like a bombshell going off!
2) What did it feel like to cut the finish line of the Rad Race Berlin (in its particular setting)?
For the Supernova team the race didn’t start in the best of ways. Our best riders were eliminated sooner than we expected. Reati was eliminated in the quarter finals because he fell. Pirazzoli was eliminated in the semifinals after falling twice. The only woman in our team, Ania, who was running her first official race placed herself second. On the other hand my race started well and ended even better! The only one able to beat me in a qualifying round was Fagia, but the more laps I ran, the more I felt my legs couldn’t take any more. Then I made it to the finals. I don’t know whether it was adrenaline, ignorance or the need to give my team a score, but everything started going into place. I was first and after two laps only two of us were left racing, Zawada and myself, and we fought until the end!!
3) For those unfamiliar with the Rad Race Berlin, what is it like, how does it work, which nations are involved, what is the level of the race?
The Rad Race Last Man Standing is an elimination race. It starts with 8 racers per group and every two laps the last racer to cut the finish line is eliminated. 128 men and 64 women start the race and in every group 4 riders qualify for the next round until there are only 8 racers left contending the final. Riders from all over the world take part in the completion and the level is high because the riders who qualify for the finals are riders that won the RHC or made it in the top 10.
4) What are the pros and cons of the Rad Race Berlin, what do you think about the sporting event which is included in a trade fair and do you think it is a model that can be exported to Italy?
I can’t find faults in the Rad Race. The event is concentrated in a Kart Track that explodes with spectators who are ready to cheer and shout out your name, boosting music is played from the beginning to the end of the races, there’s a truly high level organization and there’s an after party at the venue. It surely is a model to take inspiration from.
5) What is the difference between national and foreign competitions in which you participated?
The difference between national and foreign races is not in the organization of the events, but simply in the amount of spectators present. In Italy unfortunately besides friends and relatives, nobody comes to see a fixed gear race and any other event that isn’t football /soccer…
6) Tell us about your Asian experience, how they welcomed you, what the spectators were like, how the race was organized, what the race level was.
My experience in South Korea was fantastic! They made me feel like a real god for a week. Hundreds of photos were taken, I signed autographs, and we were given a warm welcome with attention to details thanks to the guys at the Dabster Bike Shop who organized everything. The races are organized like the most important races in the world, but the level of the athletes , although it is constantly growing, is still a step lower than in Europe and the United States.
7) As a veteran, how many years have you been practicing fixed gear and how has fixed gear changed since you started?
I’ve been practicing fixed gear for five years after having raced at a competitive level until I was 23. I decided to quit and I was looking for new emotions, something I would enjoy, and then, thanks to the guys from Supernova (originally called Low Romagna Fixed) I dived into this world.
8) What are Supernova’s projects, races and goals for 2018?
Our only goals and projects are to enjoy ourselves and do whatever makes us happy. As for the rest we just live by the day.
9) Except certain periods, you are one of the oldest teams, and what do you expect The Riders from Romagna Team ‘s future to be like and are you looking for new athletes that can continue the journey?
I hope that our future will continue exactly as in these years, with a group of friends who, without obligations and commitments, go to the races to have fun and to entertain the spectators. The Supernova team differs a little from other teams because we have never played the cycle-market trying to find riders capable of getting better results. We have always remained the group of friends from Romagna that started in 2013. Someone comes, someone goes, but nobody is bought just to gain scores. Having said that, I must thank our “managers” Riccardo Mercatali who, besides working his ass off 365 days a year to find sponsors to allow us to travel the world, is always ready to pass us a beer before the start, and Valerio Bertuzzi who designs all our Supernova frames and takes care of our diet with a bunch of B.B.Q’s all year round!
10) Who are your three favorite riders of all times?
My three favorite riders are: Neil Bezdek, who was the phenomenon of the moment when I entered this world and seemed unreachable to me back then, but now… The very strong Alec Briggs who is a great guide and is always smiling and humble…a real bomber! Last but not least, the man who has been my race partner for 20 years, Augusto Reati who may not be the strongest , but with his outstanding way of riding he makes everyone go crazy just by watching him.
Thanks for everything Criterium Italia!
ATARI TEENAGE RIOT “SPEED” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=plAr3adKbyc