BORA hansgrohe German Professional CyclingBand of Brothers

Youth vs. Experience: Emil Herzog and Cesare Benedetti at the Tour of the Alps

Emil Herzog and Cesare Benedetti

The Tour of the Alps sees Emil Herzog and Cesare Benedetti, the youngest and oldest BORA - hansgrohe athletes, line up together. We spoke with both before the start of today’s stage.

When Cesare Benedetti competed in his first Tour of the Alps, Emil Herzog was just attending kindergarten. Back in 2010, the stage race through the Alps was still called the Giro del Trentino and primarily took place in Northern Italy. Benedetti and the predecessor to the BORA - hansgrohe team, NetApp, were in their first season in the professional peloton. “I remember the race well. It was one of the highlights of our racing calendar. As a small Continental team, we were the underdogs in the line-up,” Cesare recalls.

Cesare Benedetti: The experienced one 

What followed was a story of success: rising through the ranks with NetApp, then with BORA - Argon 18 (from 2015), and later BORA - hansgrohe (from 2017), he reached the WorldTour level. Among his notable accomplishments, “Cece”, as his teammates call him, won a stage at the Giro d’Italia in 2019. He also left a mark at the Giro del Trentino, the forerunner of the Tour of the Alps 2015, when he was part of the BORA - Argon 18 team that won the initial team time trial, and he held the overall leader’s jersey for a day. “That race was exceptionally special as it included a leg through my hometown,” Cesare remembers.

In 2024, Cesare is set to participate in the Tour of the Alps for the seventh time. Now 36 years old, he is among the most experienced riders in the peloton. Interestingly, the race also features 19-year-old Emil Herzog, currently the youngest BORA - hansgrohe athlete. Cesare smiles: “I still feel quite young. But during a team training camp, I rode with Emil, and it hit me how quickly time has passed. He could almost be my son,” he laughs.

Emil Herzog: The Youngster

While Cesare approaches the Alps as an experienced mentor, Emil sees the race as an opportunity to learn. “I've just entered the WorldTour and have relatively little experience. That’s why it’s fantastic for me to be able to benefit from the knowledge of experienced pros like Cece,” says the German rider. “'It’s the little details – like how to position oneself in the peloton or how to manage energy across stages – these are aspects that operate very differently among the pros compared to the junior levels,” he continues.

After a strong spring where he gathered his first experiences in the WorldTour peloton, Emil sees the Tour of the Alps as an opportunity for further development. “The Tour of the Alps is a tough race, with many climbs and technically challenging descents. It’s quite different from the spring classics,” he says. Cesare believes Emil is up to the challenge: “Emil is a great talent. He got off to a good start in the WorldTour. If he has recovered from the classics, he will demonstrate his abilities at the Tour of the Alps as well.”

BORA - hansgrohe at the Tour of the Alps 2024

GAMPER Patrick (AUT)
KOCH Jonas (GER)

Tour of the Alps 2024





115.04.2024Egna-Cortina133,3 km
216.04.2024Salorno-Stans189,1 km
317.04.2024Schwaz-Schwaz127 km
418.04.2024Laives-Borgo Valsugana141,3 km
519.04.2024Levico Terme-Levico Terme118,6 km

 Photos: Anderl Hartmann (Benedetti) / Matthis Waetzel (Herzog)