Erik Zabel got his bike on the hook in 2008, after a rich career. Four-time winner of Milan-San Remo, 12 stages in the Tour de France and no less than six times he was allowed to wear the green jersey in Paris.
In his last year he already worked for the German team MILRAM. The team rode white Colnago bicycles, but Erik received two blue bicycles, the color of the German dairy manufacturer MILRAM. The most beautiful bikes in the peloton, according to Stephan.
In mid-June 2009, Stephan was looking for a cycling guide for the upcoming Tour de France somewhere in the Netherlands. Once he had obtained it, he saw an advertisement in it for cycling shop Van Tuyl in Zaltbommel, the Netherlands. Once there, it turned out that it was not only possible to buy new bicycles, but also old (er) professional bicycles. Wham! That couldn't be true, could it? A photo of Erik Zabel's blue Milram bike was also in the catalog. Stephan was determined. That bike would become his. However, it turned out to be easier said than done. After contacting the owner, he was asked for his bike sizes. Still strange, Stephan thought. Because why did they now need his bike buddies if he wanted to buy a bike from Zabel? Ultimately, the seller turned out to have taken over a large lot of bicycles from Rabobank and Milram and he wanted to offer a bicycle with the correct bicycle size from Stephan. Because who wants a bike that is not his size? After a lot of mailing back and forth it finally became clear and the bullet was through the church. Zabel's bike was finally in Stephan's hands.
The second blue bicycle is still owned by Erik Zabel himself. But which bike is now the reserve bike and which is the competition bike of the Tour? No one can say it now with 100% certainty, not even Erik himself. Although some details point in the direction of this bike. The bike is still in its original condition, except for the Dura-Ace manifolds. They have replaced the SRM-Powermeter cranks. Stephan found remnants of adhesive tape with which the data cables of the SRM were glued under the bottom tube, so that it would normally soon be clear that this was the competition bike because for most riders their training bike was not provided by SRM. But not with fanatic Erik, both bikes were equipped with SRM. At the time, the riders usually only had their racing bike equipped with an SRM. At the time, those riders usually only provided the racing bike with SRM. Different with Erik, his spare bike also had SRM. The scratches on the bike, however, indicate falls, which means that there is a good chance that he rode this bike in the Tour of Flanders on April 6, 2008, his last. He then turned 67ste.