This is how bad things were for Jan Ullrich in 2018

Germany’s former cycling icon Jan Ullrich has appeared before the general public in the past few days and weeks to come to terms with his eventful and moving past. The 1997 Tour de France winner spoke about his years of doping, his alcohol and drug escapades and how he found his way back to life in recent years.

After he recently spoke at several press conferences and media events about his most difficult time around 2018, when he became more and more addicted to alcohol in his property on Mallorca, which even ended in prison and hospital stays, he stated in an “ARD” Interview reveals further details.

Ullrich described his view of how the big crash happened five years ago: “In 2018 I had my biggest life crisis. I had an extreme alcohol and drug problem and had a huge crash.”

The 49-year-old emphasized that, from his point of view, it couldn’t have gotten any worse: “What would have happened then would have been death. I was really on the ground, nothing more was possible. As a competitive athlete who can do so much, I could “I also suffered a lot in this regard. I was also able to endure extreme suffering in the wrong direction.”

When he went to a rehab clinic for the first time almost five years ago, he felt worse than ever before, said Germany’s first and to date only Tour de France winner: “It was the maximum that was possible. Nothing more was possible from the physical and mental. The next step would have been death.”

Ullrich: “Then it was over for me”

When asked how it got to this point, Ullrich first had to pause in the “ARD” interview, then explained: “It was a process that lasted years. It started in 2006, when I was taken out of the Tour de France it on.”

With his suspension immediately before the start of the tour in 2006, Ullrich’s bottom fell out: “I went completely to the bottom. I was also left completely alone and was only with my closest circle.” With a bitter laugh on his face, Jan Ullrich said: “First I was the best horse in the stable, then I wasn’t even a field horse anymore!”

The 2000 Olympic champion then believed that he could fight his way out of his worst sporting crisis on his own: “I didn’t allow any help from outside or inside. And so it became more and more, I myself became weaker and weaker. “My substance was eaten up more and more every year until I had to anesthetize it. So it started with alcohol. When that wasn’t enough anymore, cocaine was added. Then it was over for me,” Ullrich continued.

The gradual path to alcohol and drug addiction was forced further and further before the big crash occurred.