Vorarlberger Severin Sigg’s goal is the federal capital for the 16th time. However, there is a special way to get there.
The man from Hörbranz discovered his passion for cycling more than 40 years ago. “For my 50th birthday, the municipal staff gave me a bicycle,” he says. At the age of 57 he made his first major tour to Naturns (South Tyrol). With the 3-speed bike over the Arlberg, the Reschenpass to the neighboring city of Meran.
When he was mayor, he was a heavyweight – he weighed over 100 kilograms. “Cycling has made me healthy again. I lost weight and felt how good the exercise is for me.”
Bigger bike rides – not just to Vienna – have always been on the program over the years. First alone, later in smaller groups. Berlin, Rotterdam, Brussels, the castles of the Loire – Serverin Sigg reached all these destinations without an e-bike. “I’ve only had that since I was 91!”
The amateur athlete has already “strum” through Vienna 15 times on his bicycle. “It’s just a beautiful city. On arrival there is a group photo in front of St. Stephen’s Cathedral. After all those kilometers it doesn’t matter whether it rains or not.” The joy of reaching the finish is then too great.
Many roads lead not only to Rome, but also to Vienna. And Severin Sigg likes variety. So a few years ago he went to Donaueschingen, where according to the motto “Brigach and Breg help the Danube on its way”. From the source of the Danube we went through Passau to our destination. Another time he took the route via Carinthia, Slovenia and through Burgenland to the federal capital.
Granddaughter infected with the “wheel virus”.
He cycled with his then ten-year-old granddaughter over the Arlberg and the little one had a very difficult time with it. “We stopped at Alpe Rauz and the granddaughter saw a sign that said: Never give up. She was convinced then that we would make it to Vienna,” recalls the grandfather. Later she accompanied him on one tour or the other.
This time, daughter Silvia, her husband Peter and two friends are there. On the first day of the tour, the Arlberg Pass and 125 of a total of 900 kilometers are on the program for the quintet. “The accommodation in Flirsch is booked, what happens next depends a bit on the temperatures,” says Siliva Mittersteiner. Only the route is fixed: the tour goes via Innsbruck along the Inn to Passau. From there, the Danube again points the way to Steffl.
In Vienna, the cheerful pensioner then redeems vouchers he received for his 90th birthday – for example for a Sachertorte in the hotel of the same name. “I actually wanted to drive three years ago, but then I couldn’t leave my wife, who needed care, alone. Unfortunately, she has since passed away,” he says. With the 16th tour he wants to fulfill another dream. “You shouldn’t put off something like that.”