Seb Breuer might be a relative newcomer to the ultra-endurance racing game, but he’s rapidly making a name for himself as being one of the fastest on the circuit. After a disappointing Trans Continental Race earlier in the year, Seb gained redemption with a stunning win at the recent Badlands race, recording the fastest time ever for the course.
As part of the Tailfin R&D Division, Seb has given us a huge amount of valuable feedback by using our latest product prototypes and has helped shape some of our soon-to-be-released product ranges.
We caught up with him whilst he was getting back to reality last week to find out a little more about what makes him tick.
Who is Seb Breuer? Describe yourself in a sentence.
Adventure and challenge-seeking guy from Germany who loves coffee.
Where do you call home?
Where my wife is! Most of the time in Bensheim, Germany.
What’s your day job?
Liaison Manager at Schwalbe Tires. Working with our Pro Athletes in triathlon, Road and Gravel.
Outside of cycling, what do you enjoy doing?
Going out for dinner or coffee with my wife. Hiking and taking the dog Lena for a walk.
Ultra-distance gravel racing is a relatively new discipline for you; what is your cycling background?
Started in 2005 as a junior in road racing. Did some bigger races in the U23 and switched to MTB in 2012. Won the German and European Championships last year.
TCR didn’t quite go to plan for you this year. Do you think it motivated you for Badlands?
100%. Quitting was a hard option I had to deal with. But the real goal, for over a year, was always Badlands.
Talk us through your Badlands race; what was your pre-race strategy?
I just wanted to stick to my own speed. Sounds simple, but as with all races, it’s quite difficult to do so.
Did you manage to stick to your strategy?
Yes, the whole race. That was the most important part of my win.
Did you have any sections of the route that you were worried about?
Haha, the beach and the sandy roads near the beach.
You set up your bike pretty light for the race; what did you carry with you?
Yes. There was just food (bars and gels) and two spare tubes.
Did you use everything you carried, or were there items you would leave out next time?
I didn’t use the spare tubes, thankfully! But you have to carry these because you never know.
Did you have any problems during the race?
Yes, with my gears in the first 130k and a stupid routing mistake (detour of 5k)
How did you choose your bike for the race?
It was easy. I’ve only got a Rose XLite road bike and their Backroad gravel bike. And the road bike wouldn’t be the best option for Badlands….
Speed or comfort? How did you set your bike up?
Speed. But my aero setup still has quite a high level of comfort. I love to use the aero bars. It’s like my favourite place.
Choosing the right tyres for the Badlands course is very tricky as it varies from fast tarmac to very rocky trails. How did you choose your tyres, what tyres did you use, did you use inserts and what pressure/sealant did you use?
That is definitely true. But working for Schwalbe gives me a lot of useful insights. My choice was the Schwalbe G-One RS 45mm. I ran with just tubeless sealant and without any inserts. Fast and puncture resistant.
Often the hardest part of an ultra race is how hard it is mentally. Do you have any special tricks to help keep focus or get through the hard parts?
The question of why you are doing this must be answered before the race. Then you don’t have to think and doubt for a long time during the race. That’s simple as it sounds.
What was your highlight of Badlands this year (besides winning!)?
The Landscapes. Wow, it was all amazing, and I am still speechless! Sadly some parts were at night, so I didn´t see all of them.
Were there any especially hard parts?
The final. It was just uphill and some tricky downhills, it was brutal, and it even included a hike-a-bike section 10 kilometres before the finish.
What is your favourite thing to eat when racing an event like Badlands?
It’s a mixture of sweet and salty food I love to eat, but to be honest, In the desert there was no choice. Take what you can get.
What’s next on the horizon for you?
Pizza with my wife, UCI Gravel World championships, maybe Race across the Andes and the big Highlight is Atlas Mountain Race in Feb of 2023.
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